SS TOROA - 1949 to 1960

Posted by on 20 September 2013 | Comments

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 Chafing pieces fitted to Toroas rudder to prevent damage when ferries were tied up at night. They were later removed.

1959 30 May

The opening of the Auckland Harbour Bridge, spelling the demise of many of the ferry runs, particularly the end of the vehicular ferry service.  The ferry company sells its fleet to the North Shore Transport Co who continue with the Devonport ferry service, operating the steam ferries Toroa  and Makora, with Takapuna as standby. The rest of the fleet laid up. The four steam vehicle ferries sold for scrap and their hulks towed up the Harbour and burnt.


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Passenger ferries The Peregrine (left) and Ngoiro pass through the half-built Harbour Bridge, c.1958

Photograph: Jack Kirk              Sir George Grey Special Collections, Auckland Libraries, 998-2

1960 December    
The ferries Takapuna, Makora and Toroa taken over by Leo Dromgoole's North Shore Ferries Ltd., and  continue on the Devonport–Auckland run. Joined in 1961 by the revamped MV Kestrel with glassed-in upper decks. Kestrel had been converted from steam propulsion to diesel in 1951. Toroa also continues to be used for weekend trips and charters.

toroa under harbour bridge

Toroa passing under the completed Harbour Bridge on a charter cruise

Photo:  Hooker Bowden