The Australian pilot vessel and steam yacht Alvina had a long and varied career. It was built in the UK as a private yacht, 1891 and in 1903 came to Australia to commence in the pilot service at Port Phillip Heads. This model of the pilot ship is held by the nearby Queenscliff Maritime Museum in Victoria. In 1923 the larger Akuna took over from the Alvina, which then served as an excursion steamer and ferry in Westernport Bay for another 10 years when in 1933 it was replaced by an ex-Sydney vehicular ferry displaced by the new Harbour Bridge. Alvina was not scrapped until 1961.
In 1901 the pilots took delivery of their first steam-powered pilot cutter, “Victoria”, 46 metres in length, built at Williamstown. “Victoria” was followed by “Alvina”, “Akuna”, “Akuna II” and in 1953, “Wyuna”, a twin-screw diesel electric pilot cutter 63 metres in length. “Wyuna” served until November 1979 and was then sold to the new Australian Maritime College at Launceston, Tasmania for use as a training ship.
Model of the Pilot vessel 'Alvina in glass case