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HMS Buffalo Re-examination Project Update

Feb 22, 2021 | HMS Buffalo, Manager Update

The HMS Buffalo Re-examination Project is crossing its fingers for fine weather and smooth seas this coming weekend.  A team of 10 volunteer divers led by maritime archaeologists Matthew Gainsford and Kurt Bennett will be surveying the wreck over the two days.  Surveying the wreck entails measuring, photographing, recording details and taking samples that will paint a picture of the wreck as it sits on the ocean floor 50 metres from the beach.  The last archaeological survey was done in 1986 by Bill Jeffery and five divers from Adelaide.

With the advancements in technology over the last 35 years it is hoped that the survey will produce sufficient photographs and data to create a 3D model of the HMS Buffalo shipwreck.  The scientific testing of the samples taken will provide a reference for establishing provenance of the artefacts held in the Museum collection.

The public are invited to join them on Saturday and Sunday.  Saturday morning will start with a karakia by Joe Davis, Ngati Hei, at 7am.  Following a divers briefing, teams of divers will enter the water on a rotating basis over the day and then start again on the Sunday morning through to early afternoon.

The local museum holds a wealth of information about this archaeological site which has gained recognition both locally, nationally and internationally.  The project team and museum staff will be on site at the HMS Buffalo Memorial from Thursday to Sunday with informative displays and artefacts.  Approximately 200 children will visit on the Thursday and Friday from the local schools to gain a greater understanding of the role the HMS Buffalo played in our local history.

“It’s going to be an exciting weekend and we really hope that the locals come down and join us! Dress up smart as a national television station will be on site to record this fantastic project”, says Rebecca Cox Museum Manager and project leader.


Whats on!!! – HMS Buffalo Re-examination Project – Thursday to Sunday – Thursday and Friday set aside for school groups. Saturday begins with a Karakia at 7am and both Saturday and Sunday divers in from 8am to 3:30pm.

This article first appeared in THE INFORMER
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