A RESTORED replica of a historic sailing ship will soon make a return voyage by road from Warrnambool to Mount Gambier.
The Lady Nelson display vessel has been undergoing extensive rebuilding and repairs since late last year as part of a contract won by Flagstaff Hill Maritime Village.
It will be taken back to its base outside the Mount Gambier visitor information centre in July on an escorted road transport convoy. The timber frame, decking and rigging have been renewed by Flagstaff Hill's two boat builders and a replica hull constructed with fibreglass by Warrnambool company Fibre Infusion.
Flagstaff Hill manager Peter Abbott said the project was part of efforts to get more wooden boat building and repair work in Warrnambool. The original Lady Nelson was built in England in 1798 and sailed by Lieutenant James Grant along the South Australian coast when he sighted and named Mount Gambier in 1800. Another replica is a seaworthy vessel based in Tasmania.