Historical information

After reading an interview of Elizabeth Fiddian in the Age in 2003 about her time volunteering at the mission, Matt Blackwood and Csilla Csonvay contacted Nigel Porteous to offer to film a documentary.

The filming was self-funded: they had a volunteer crew of three, pulled some personal favours to source the equipment, Csilla edited the film at her workplace’s edit suite out of hours. Nick Farnell provided the voice overs for reading out the letters.

It was recorded in a week end, on Betacam. They interviewed six or more members, who talked about their experiences, and they intercut their interviews with archival footage from the Mission.

The interviews took place both at the Mission as well as in some of the interviewees' homes.

The film was premiered at the Mission, and where it was played on a dedicated TV for visitors on a DVD. In 2023, Matt send a digital copy in mp4.


The producers met some of the surviving ladies of the Harbour Lights Guild who gave up their Saturdays and Sundays to arrange events and outings for lonely sailors arriving in Melbourne.

Physical description

Documentary including interviews, photographs from the MSTV archives, and reading of Lillie Duncan letters from Charlie.