PS Ruby to celebrate her 110th Birthday at Wentworth with one of her old friends

Sunday, November 5, 2017

PS Ruby to celebrate her 110th Birthday at Wentworth

with one of her old friends

The Paddle Steamer ‘Ruby’ was built at Morgan by David Milne in 1907 for Captain Hugh King and is celebrating her 110th Birthday with one of her oldest friends, the PS Marion from Mannum on the 4th and 5th November at Wentworth.


The golden days of river trade will certainly come alive when these two heritage vessels come together at the historic Port of Wentworth where the two rivers, the Murray and Darling meet.


As sister ships for the Gem Navigation Company in the early 1900’s, the PS Ruby and Marion were operated by a union of the Ben Chaffey Steamboat Company and Captain Hugh King’s Gem Line of steamers, with headquarters in the Adelaide office of Messrs. A.H. Landseer Ltd.  This Company was later to become the Murray Steamship Company. 


In their heyday these passenger/cargo steamers travelled the mighty Rivers becoming lifelines to so many who lived along the river highway.  Ruby was known as being as fast as any vessel on the river and travelled the Morgan to Swan Hill route for most of her working life and was known as a ‘bottom ender’ as never ventured further up the river because of her length.


The PS Marion built in 1897 will also celebrate her 120th Birthday in Wentworth and will make her way back to where her life began as a hawking vessel (floating departing store) with renowned retailers Wm Bowring & Co.


“To have both of these historic vessels back in Wentworth and cruising together again after so many years will create a grand spectacle for visitors to our river port”, said GM


“It will be a very special birthday party dinner at the riverside Wentworth Civic Centre overlooking the boats on Saturday 4th and I am sure many will reminisce as to bustling days when the township was alive with boats and steam”.


 These beautifully restored vessels operated by dedicated teams of volunteers will be offering one cruises on Sunday 5th November at the Wentworth Wharf with live entertainment, food stalls from 9.00 a.m. and will conclude with a 2.5 hour cocktail cruise up the Darling.


“It will be the first time a cocktail cruise has been offered by the Marion and the Ruby up the Darling and our volunteers are looking forward to bringing her up to join the Ruby to celebrate these milestone birthdays”, said Chairman of the Mannum Dock Museum, Rob Bowring OAM.


“To have both boats together on this Darling cruise will again create history after so many years highlighting the importance of retaining our maritime heritage on the inland rivers for the future”.


Boaties are welcome to join the festivities and tickets are now on sale for the Sunday cruises and the official birthday party dinner at the Civic Centre through the Wentworth Visitor Information Centre phone 03 5027 5080 , or visit for further details..


The PS Ruby 110th Birthday Celebrations will be on Sunday 5th November at the Wentworth Wharf from 9.00 a.m. to 3.30 p.m. with Free Entry, food stalls and live entertainment.



For further media information or interviews contact Karen Arnold, Wentworth Visitor Information Centre on 03 5027 5080.


Event at a Glance:


Event;             PS Ruby 110th Birthday Celebrations in conjunction with the PS Marion’s 120th Birthday


Date:               Sunday 5th November 2017


Place:             Wentworth wharf

                        Live entertainment/food stalls/heritage paddle steamer cruises


Cost:               Free Entry


One Hour

Cruises:         PS Ruby and PS Marion

1 hour cruises - 10.30 a.m.  12 noon and 1.30 p.m.

                        2.5 hour twilight cocktail cruise up the Darling – Departs 5.00 p.m.




Dinner:           Satuday 4th November – Wentworth Civic Centre

                        Cost - $35.00 per person – Live Entertainment – two course dinner




Dinner and


Bookings:      Tracey McInnes - Wentworth Visitor Information Centre -

03 5027 5080 ,