In Perilous Seas: A Vigil for the Star of Greece, wrecked at Port Willunga in 1888

The Star of Greece is one of South Australia’s most famous shipwrecks. Laden with wheat for a voyage to England, she was wrecked in a violent storm off Port Willunga on the 13th July 1888. Tragically the ship was only 200 metres from shore when it broke in two amidships at 2.00am, and help did not arrive in time to save 18 people who perished in the giant storm.

A memorial to honour them was held at the Aldinga Uniting Church on the 31st of August, 2019.  Here at their grave, we stepped back in time with a dramatic and mesmerising winter’s night vigil in projection art. In a dark tale of the tragedy and its aftermath, we paid our respects to the lost at sea. The local Willunga branch of the National Trust and the City of Onkaparinga were wonderful supporters of the program and we were incredibly moved by the reception and turnout.

This project gave South Australian divers, coastal photographers, scientists, artists and the greater community a profound opportunity to assist in the creation of this unique narrated audiovisual work, enabling us share the important tragic history of our coastlines and provide insight into coastal safety today. You can find out more about the community engagement process here.

In a reprise of this powerful work, as part of the 135th anniversary commemoration of the shipwreck, Aldinga Library will be screening “In Perilous Seas: A vigil for the Star of Greece wrecked at Port Willunga in 1888” on the 15th July 2023 at 10.30am. The screening will follow a talk by author Paul Simpson about the Star of Greece and the events of the wreck. We are thrilled that this event has completely sold out! All the details of the event and booking details can be found here.

We would be delighted to see those who have contributed to the film and the wider community at this event.

Illuminart Stories in Light acknowledge Traditional Owners of Country throughout Australia and recognise their continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures; and to Elders past and present.