Sights set on $10,000 fundraising for ferry

Otago Harbour Ferry chairman Shem Sutherland puts the finishing touches on the Elsie Evan's new hand rail / bike rack. Photo by Jonathan Chilton-Towle
Otago Harbour Ferry chairman Shem Sutherland puts the finishing touches on the Elsie Evan's new hand rail / bike rack. Photo by Jonathan Chilton-Towle

A new handrail and bike rack are the latest progress on restoring the old Dunedin harbour ferry, Elsie Evans.

The rail was installed this month by EB Engineering. Broad Bay residents Alan and Di Potter donated the money for the job.

Otago Harbour Ferry Inc chairman Shem Sutherland said the rail could also be used as a bike rack by passengers.

Since boat builders stopped working on the boat last year, volunteers have completed many of the remaining jobs.

Mr Sutherland estimated the group needed to raise about $10,000 to pay for the remaining work.

Cash donations were not the only way to support the project and the group would also appreciate donations of materials or services.

He hoped the boat would be operational by spring. Many people had pre-purchased tickets for rides and Mr Sutherland said these would be honoured as soon as the boat was ready.

Elsie Evans was the last of a ferry tradition on Otago Harbour, which was the primary form of freight and commuter traffic from 1859 until the opening of the Dunedin to Port Chalmers railway line, in 1873, and Portobello low road, in 1913.

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