Q) Lyttelton Steam Tug
Your journey takes you right up over the bridge of Sutton Quay towards the ferry terminal. At the corner look down into the harbour in front of you to see the Lyttelton Steam Tug. Having been commissioned in 1906, the steam tug Canterbury left the UK in June 1907 and took 3 months to sail the 12,000 miles, under her own steam, to Lyttelton.
Working around the harbour, the Canterbury assisted with moving vessels carrying cargo, oil and passengers. Its more historic roles included escorting the Nimrod out of Lyttelton in 1908 on Shackleton’s expedition to the Antarctic. Renamed Lyttelton in 1911, she also carried out wartime duties for the Navy who armed her with a canon and machine gun. She also dropped depth charges and took mines to Akaroa.
The Lyttelton returned to port duties before being retired in 1970. Thanks to volunteers at the Tug Lyttelton Preservation Society she escaped the scrapyard and was successfully reconfigured as a passenger steamer in 1973. Re-modernised in 2019, the tug now sails to Lyttelton Heads through the summer months on a Sunday afternoon. Check their website for details https://tuglyttelton.co.nz/