HMAS Psyche's Salamander Bay memorial officially unveiled, blessed

MEMORIAL: Bob Baldwin with members of the Newcastle naval cadets at the official unveiling ceremony. Picture: Supplied
MEMORIAL: Bob Baldwin with members of the Newcastle naval cadets at the official unveiling ceremony. Picture: Supplied

ONE hundred years after its commissioning, the 'forgotten cruiser' HMAS Psyche which lies at the bottom of Port Stephens has been remembered for the role it played in Australian naval history.

The 95-metre long lightweight cruiser, first commissioned by the Australian Royal Navy (RAN) on July 1, 1915, lies 4.2 metres below sea level about 200 metres off Salamander Bay's Roy Wood Reserve.

On June 27 approximately 50 people attended the official unveiling and blessing of a memorial plaque in recognition of the ship's contribution and its final resting place.

Port Stephens naval association president Bob Parish said the boulder and plaque were obtained through a $5200 federal government grant.

"A flagpole and three other plaques, one each for the RAN, Naval Association and Coat of Arms, will be erected at a later date," Mr Parish said.

"It is our hope that some time in the future the site be considered as a historic dive site. We are grateful for the support of [Paterson MP] Bob Baldwin while the blessing was performed by Padre Garry Parker and the catafalque party provided by Newcastle naval cadets."

HMAS Psyche came to rest at the bottom of the bay in 1940 after a typhoon-like storm flipped the cruiser to its side, and eventually sunk between Corlette Point and Salamander Bay.

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