60th Anniversary of the Sinking of H.M.A.S. SydneyPrint Page Print this page

24-October-2016 {Peter Williams]
24-October-2016 {Peter Williams]

Photographs supplied by Arthur Garland / Peter F Williams

The plaque commemorates the 60th anniversary of the sinking of H.M.A.S. Sydney during World War Two, and the Tasmanians who were killed in action in the sinking.

The battle between the Australian light cruiser HMAS Sydney and the German auxiliary cruiser Kormoran was a single-ship that occurred on 19 November 1941, off the coast of Western Australia.  The ships encountered each other approximately 106 nautical miles (196 km; 122 mi) off Dirk Hartog Island. Both ships were destroyed in the half-hour engagement.

From 24 November, after Sydney failed to return to port, air and sea searches were conducted. Boats and rafts carrying survivors from Kormoran were recovered at sea, while others made landfall north of Carnarvon: 318 of the 399 personnel on Kormoran survived. While debris from Sydney was found, there were no survivors from the 645-strong complement.

It was the largest loss of life in the history of the Royal Australian Navy, the largest Allied warship lost with all hands during World War Two, and a major blow to Australian wartime morale. Australian authorities learned of Sydney's fate from the surviving Kormoran personnel, who were held in prisoner of war camps until the end of the war. The exact location of the two wrecks remained unverified until 2008.


Address:Franklin Wharf, Kings Pier, Hobart, 7000
GPS Coordinates:Lat: -42.883082
Long: 147.334013
Note: GPS Coordinates are approximate.
View Google Map


Monument Type:Plaque
Monument Theme:Conflict
Actual Event Start Date:19-November-1941
Actual Event End Date:19-November-2001


Actual Monument Dedication Date:Sunday 18th November, 2001
Front Inscription

In February 1938 the cruiser H.M.A.S. Sydney visited Hobart as flagship for the regatta, tied up alongside Kings Pier and was photographed from about this spot.

On 19 November 1941 after sinking the German Armed Merchant Cruiser Kormoran in the Indian Ocean she was lost with all 645 crew, comprising 635 members of the R.A.N., 6 members of the R.A.A.F who operated her Walrus aircraft and 4 civilian canteen staff.

To commemorate the 60th Anniversary of her loss this plaque is erected by HMAS Sydney & Vietnam Logistical Support Veterans Association and the Department of Veterans Affairs

Tasmanian casualities
[ Names ]

Unveiled by His Excellency the Honourable Sir Guy Green AC, KBE, CVO Governor of Tasmania
18 November 2001

Source: MA
Monument details supplied by Monument Australia - www.monumentaustralia.org.au
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