S.S. Dicky

Sunshine Coast Council

Caloundra, Australia
2014 - 2016


Cosmos Archaeology worked closely with the Sunshine Coast Council to undertake a preliminary archaeological investigation into the S.S. Dicky, ahead of plans to remove the wreck of the iron steamship from the beach at Caloundra for long term management and conservation.

The vessel was wrecked in 1893 after being driven ashore during a cyclone, and only the lower section of the hull survived after more than 120 years of wave action, corrosion, and collapse events. Cosmos Archaeology undertook an initial archaeological investigation to examine the structural integrity and archaeological potential of the wreck, which included a test excavation at the site and a subsequent report.

Two years later, Cosmos Archaeology was commissioned to plan and oversee the removal of the upper portions of the wreck, located in the intertidal zone of Dicky Beach. This followed concerns for public safety and on – going loss of heritage significance in light of increased deterioration. Our archaeologists prepared all the preliminary documentation for the works, including a Heritage Impact Assessment, Conservation Management Plan and Wreck Interpretation Plan, which ultimately enabled a permit to be obtained from the Department of Environment and Heritage.

The excavation and cutting were directed by a team of our skilled maritime experts working onsite. Our archaeologists ensured key heritage elements at risk of further collapse were extensively recorded to preserve scientific information, before being securely removed.

Cosmos Archaeology has also provided ongoing monitoring advice of the in situ wreck remains. Cosmos Archaeology was then approached to create a digital 3D model of the S.S Dicky vessel to use in an interpretive display. Unfortunately, there were no surviving records of the ship lines of S.S. Dicky in order to construct a model. As such, a three-staged project was undertaken including:

1) research of vessel plans,

2) creation of line plans and,

3) creation of the digital 3D model

3D Model


Geoff Hewitt for producing the line plan of the hull of S.S Dicky as well as the deck layout an approximation of the internal arrangement.

Kevin Edwards, Tempus Archaeology for construction of the digital 3D model.

Sunshine Coast


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