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Souvenir t-shirt from HMAS VAMPIRE

Date: 1986
Overall: 660 x 830 x 5 mm
Medium: Polyester, cotton
Credit Line: ANMM Collection Gift from Jo-Ann Campion
Object Name: T-shirt
Object No: 00045834

User Terms

    Souvenir t-shirt from HMAS VAMPIRE depicting the ship's crest altered to reflect the logo 'The Bat's Buggered'. This shirt was designed and produced by the engineering mess for the final decommissioning of VAMPIRE in 1986. The back features the Ettamogah Pub renamed 'Vampire's Domain' and the phrase 'Daring Dusties Days are Done!’ (Dusties - being slang for sailor engineers).
    SignificanceThis souvenir t-shirt is representative of HMAS VAMPIRE's decommissioning in 1986 and its crew's service and camaraderie.
    HistoryVAMPIRE is a ship from another era - the last of the big destroyers built in Australia at the former premier shipbuilding facility on Cockatoo Island, Sydney - which closed in 1991. It is the last Australian example of a 'gun ship', ships which used guns as their primary armament and still relied to an extent on the skill of the gunners. Modern frigates might carry a single highly automated turret gun, but their real firepower comes from guided missiles.

    HMAS VAMPIRE was the last of three Daring class destroyers originally ordered in 1946, VAMPIRE was built in Australia between 1952 and 1956 and commissioned in 1959. Her sister ships were VOYAGER (commissioned 1957) and VENDETTA (commissioned 1958). A fourth ship - WATERHEN - was planned but never ordered. The three Darings were named in honour of the Admiralty's V&W class destroyers and together formed the 9th Destroyer Squadron. During its 27-year career, VAMPIRE steamed some 808,000 nautical miles.

    Decommissioned in 1986 for the final time, VAMPIRE was put on display at the Australian National Maritime Museum where it remains one of the most popular exhibits.

    The ship was often described as being a 'happy ship' where there was little confrontation. The final decommissioning period was an emotional one for many. The engineering department designed this t-shirt as a final commemoration of 'The Bat'.

    Additional Titles

    (not entered): Souvenir t-shirt from HMAS VAMPIRE

    Web title: Souvenir t-shirt from HMAS VAMPIRE

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