Darwin Community to Gather to Save the People’s Stella Maris

Published: 24 Oct 2014

Working and retired seafarers, their families, and the broader Darwin community will gather on Saturday in a show of support for keeping Stella Maris in the people’s hands.

The CLP Government has declared its intent to take control of the historic centre from NT workers and hand it over to developers.

In response the community will gather to hear about the centre’s long and significant history including the Traveller’s Walk, which was first used in the 1880s, and the old Railway Cottage, the only such pre-WWII cottage in Darwin.

Unions NT Secretary Paul Kirby said “This centre has huge historical significance to Darwin, and for the CLP Government to even countenance selling the whole thing off to developers is a disgrace.

“Union members built Stellas, attended Christmas parties at Stellas, cared for the welfare of seafarers at Stellas; the centre was always a haven for workers and their families,” he said.

MUA NT Secretary Thomas Mayor said the event would allow people to gather and show how much the site means to the community.

“Stella Maris does not belong to the CLP Government and their developers, it belongs to this community,” he said.

“It has always been about community. It was built as a haven to provide services and assistance to maritime workers including international seamen and port workers. The history of Stella Maris belongs to the Darwin people.

“I encourage everyone who believes that community history is important to come down to the Stella Maris grassed area and let our Territory government know there are some things that just aren’t for sale.”

When: 3pm, Saturday, 25 October 2014
Where: Stella Maris grassed area

Specific event details here.


Authorised by P Crumlin, Maritime Union of Australia, Sydney