The Lifeboat Queenscliffe forms the core of the Museum collection.



The Lifeboat Queenscliffe was built in Adelaide and commenced service at Queenscliff in 1926. She was taken out of service in 1976 by the Marine Board of Victoria and subsequently offered to the Borough of Queenscliffe for care and display.

The Lifeboat is listed on the Australian Register of Historic Vessels (ARHV). To view the classification follow the link to the Queenscliffe page on the ARHV site.

During her 50 years of service the Queenscliffe attended many calls for assistance both inside and outside the Heads. Some of the vessels and calls for help the lifeboat attended were:

  • 1960 - Army Commandos lost in the Rip
  • 1967 - The search for the late Prime Minister Harold Holt
  • 1974 - The last attendance to a vessel was to the Brisbane Trader which was on fire

The shed which housed the lifeboat is located on the Queenscliff 'New' or 'Steamer' Pier (built in 1884). This shed includes the internal section of the slipway used to launch and retrieve the lifeboat. The external slipway and some other structures associated with the lifeboat shed have been removed.


The Queenscliffe is the centre of the display, accompanied by lifeboat artefacts. Surrounding displays illustrate some of the wrecks and rescues in which the lifeboat service was involved.

An interpretive panel telling the story of the lifeboat service occupies the central wall of the Museum.

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