Please select your home edition
Edition
Festival of Sails 2017

Flamingo Bay - Auction approaches for unique adventure ship

by Jeni Bone on 20 Aug 2013
David is confident Flamingo Bay will be sold Jeni Bone
Speaking to David Tomlinson, owner and skipper for the past 13 years of RV Flamingo Bay, you gather he is both extremely excited to sell her and move on to the next chapter in his life, and torn, with a torrent of memories and adventures aboard this unique vessel.

'There’s no doubt that she will be sold,' he says, referring to the upcoming auction Monday 7 October at Southport Yacht Club on Queensland’s Gold Coast. 'Within the first week of starting the campaign, we had at least 10 serious enquiries and there are currently about six potential buyers from all over the world, and local operators in Australia.'

Built by Belliard Creighton for the Belgian government in 1956, the product of two years planning and designing and two years construction to the highest specifications, the 36m vessel was originally built for coastal patrols and rescues in the treacherous North Sea.

Intended as an ice breaker, her engineering is second to none. 'This is the boat you want to come rescue you if you’re in trouble anywhere at sea,' says Tomlinson. 'I’ve taken on 20ft waves in this and she hasn’t missed a beat.'

He continues: 'She has saved many ships and lives during her earlier life as the Belgium government’s ice-breaking rescue tug. I found her 13 years ago in the Caribbean and brought her back to Australia. Since then, we have created the perfect ‘get away from it all’ platform.

In early September, she will be slipped at Harwood, on the Clarence River near Yamba, and a naval architect and surveyor will go over the vessel to produce a full current 2B survey.

'They have a 2700 tonne cradle there and can handle decent sized boat,' says Tomlinson.


Among his favourite memories aboard Flamingo Bay are taking her through the Panama Canal. 'That was fascinating. To captain your own ship through the Panama Canal. It was wonderful! It’s one of those voyages you always dream about. It was on my bucket list!'

Then there was the serenity and postcard-perfect sunsets, sitting at anchor in Opunohu Bay, Morea, Tahiti. 'It’s a beautiful place. I stayed there for three extra days as I crossed the Pacific. It was incredible – a tropical paradise.'

Flamingo Bay has travelled through much of the South Pacific over the past 13 years: Tahiti, Fiji, Vanuatu, the Solomon Islands, Pago Pago.

'That’s what I’ll miss – the ability to explore the planet safely. I’ll be losing my range!'

Tomlinson plans to take his 'little wooden freighter', the 56ft Bronzewing to the US by transport ship, from Brisbane to Georgia. 'Then in April we’ll take it to the Bahamas and enjoy the lifestyle there. I have so much research planned, and lots of diving. I want to get back to filming.'

He has no doubts he’ll soon be farewelling his unique and historic vessel. 'There are enough people who are legitimate buyers, that I am confident she’ll be sold. That’s the advantage of putting it up for auction - people have to make up their minds by the date.'

Under the experienced gavel of auctioneer, Colin Banks, the Auction will be held 7 October 2013, 1100hrs EST at the Southport Yacht Club, Main Beach, Gold Coast, Australia.

Registered buyers can bid during the auction either personally, or via phone.

Enquiries to Ian Swan, Swan Super Lines. Tel: 0416 110 466.

More information www.swansuperlines.com and www.adventureshipauction.com

Zhik Yachting 660x82Pacific Sailing School 660x82 1Safety at Sea - Baltic - 3

Related Articles

The C Beetle Project
Every now and then something comes along your way and you just have to read it. Every now and then something comes along your way and you just have to read it. Such is Phil Smidmore’s tale of Mick Miller and if I could be so bold as to implore you to read, then I know your life will be the better for it!
Posted on 30 Aug
Dateline Rio - Sailing Olympics review - as good as it gets?
The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The Rio Sailing Olympics was widely judged to have been the best of recent times. The weather was better than Weymouth and Qingdao, the courses more varied, but from a working media perspective, it was the people running the Rio regatta who really made the difference.
Posted on 26 Aug
Rio 2016 - Plain speaking by triple-medalist on Olympic sailing moves
Triple Olympic medalist, Santiago Lange has been on the sharp end of changes made to Olympic classes and formats Santiago Lange, a six-time Olympian and Bronze medallist in the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, won his third medal – Gold sailing in the Nacra 17 class. With that length of experience at an Olympic level, having sailed the Laser, Tornado and now Nacra 17 classes his comments on the future shape of the Olympic regatta was one of the highlights of the Medallists Media Conferences.
Posted on 25 Aug
Audi Hamilton Island Race Week 2016 - Day 1 Video
Day 1 of Audi Hamilton Race Week 2016 provided the first opportunity for Wild Oats XI and Scallywag to go head-to-head Day 1 of Audi Hamilton Race Week 2016 provided the first opportunity for Wild Oats XI and Scallywag to go head-to-head on an inshore race course. The two boats shadowed each other in the pre-race manoeuvres prior to the start of a race to Lindeman Island and back, starting in Dent Passage. Both boats made a fine spectacle as they reached to the northern tip of Dent Island before heading upwind
Posted on 21 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images of the penultimate race in the Finns - Scott wins
Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn Sail-World's Richard Gladwell was on the water for the final race of the Qualifying Series of the Mens Finn, in what potentially could have been Giles Scott's (GBR) Gold medal winning race. In the end, the current world champion won in style.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Images from the Mens RS:X Medal Race
Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class Sail-World's NZ Editor, Richard Gladwell, was on the water at the Medal Race for the RS:X class won before the race by Dorian van Rijsselberghe (NED) without needing points from the Medal Race. Nick Dempsey (GBR) was second on a similar basis.
Posted on 15 Aug
Rio 2016 - Sailors talk of Life at the Extreme on the Atlantic Ocean
Certainly the Volvo Ocean Race catchcry of Life at the Extreme is not a phrase associated with the Sailing Olympics. The 470 crews were suffering the mixed emotions of survival of an extreme test by nature, the cold, and for some elation at their placings, after Thursday's battle for survival. In conditions that looked more out of the Volvo Ocean Race, than an Olympic sailing regatta, crews battled 20kt plus winds and Atlantic Ocean rollers that towered up to four metres.
Posted on 13 Aug
Rio Olympics - Fourth gallery of images the fearsome Niteroi course
Fourth image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean Fourth image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean - sailing in 3-4 metre swells and 20kt plus winds. believe it or not the sea conditions were worse inshore as the fleet encountered the backwashed Atlantic rollers
Posted on 12 Aug
Rio 2016 - Third image gallery of 470's braving the Atlantic Ocean
Third image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean Third image gallery from racing on Day 4 in the Mens and Womens 470 class on the Niteroi course in the Atlantic Ocean - sailing in 3-4 metre swells and 20kt plus winds
Posted on 12 Aug
Gladwell's Line - The challenges of Guanbara Bay
The decision to run Medal Racing on the Pao de Acucer course, probably won't be remembered as one of the brightest The decision to run Medal Racing on the Pao de Acucer, probably won't be remembered as one of the brightest of the 2016 Sailing Olympics. Over shadowed by a 1300ft tall granite and quartz mountain in the shape of a sugarloaf, the bay suffers from dramatic windshifts, and huge variance in wind pressure.
Posted on 11 Aug