Friends of the Industry
Friends of the Industry is a group of volunteers that was formed in 1990 with the specific objective to restore the PS Industry to her former glory. These volunteers work tirelessly to maintain the Industry in working order and as original as possible.
The volunteers also enable the Industry to steam on the first Sunday of most months as well as for special occasions such as the “All Steamed Up” event at Mannum and other historic re-enactments or charters.
Steaming does rely heavily on the availability of volunteers and wood supply as the Industry is driven by a wood fired boiler which has to be stoked continuously to keep the paddlewheels turning. Wood supplies need to be located, cut and stockpiled for trips and this too is carried out by volunteers.
It will be largely thanks to the efforts of many volunteers and community sponsors that the PS Industry will be able to be enjoyed by many more generations of Australians.
In June 1990, a public meeting was held to gauge the level of interest in the restoration of the PS Industry and through this meeting a ‘Friends of the Industry’ voluntary group was formed to oversee the restoration of the vessel under the supervision of shipwright Andrew Cook.
After many efforts to restore her to an operation standard by the volunteers, the Council finally agreed and the PS Industry was dry-docked in early 1990 with substantial work done to her deteriorating hull.
She steamed again on October 19th, 1990 only one day before she was set to leave Renmark, bound for Morgan to star in the ABC Mini-Series: ‘The River Kings’ as the PS Lady Mabel.
Following complications in early 1994, the ‘Friends of the Industry’ and the Corporation of Renmark approached the Minister for Transport with regard to securing a loan for final restoration work of the vessel. This would enable the PS Industry to gain its survey standard which was so integral to its operation as a passenger vessel.
What followed was almost a year of hard work by volunteers to bring the vessel to survey standard. Modifications such as replacing steering chains below deck and reinforcing windows were long term jobs done with the assistance of volunteers.
On 16th July 1995, the PS Industry was re-commissioned as an historic passenger type vessel.
Since then the PS Industry has attended many River Events from Mildura to Goolwa. In April 2011 she celebrated her 100th Birthday with a huge weekend at Renmark, with more than 10 Paddle Steamers and other boats of all descriptions attending.
Being a voluntary organisation, Friends of the Industry relies on these charters and steaming days to provide funding to keep up the maintenance and running of the Industry. There are however also members who may not be actively involved with the Industry because of distance or other reasons but provide their support through their membership or sponsorship contribution.
If you are interested in historic vessels and would like to become a Friend of the Industry, we invite you to join.
As a full member you are entitled to:
- Two free one and a half hour trips per financial year
- Three newsletters updating you with what is happening with the Industry
Membership fees are:
- Adult $25.00
- Child $10.00
- Family (2 adults & 2 children) $30.00
- Senior $15.00
- Club/Corporation $60.00
Application for Membership
Come along for a cruise!
Bookings now available! Individual and group bookings can be made by contacting the Visitor Information Centre on 1300 661 704 or 8580 3060. Payment to be made on booking.