The local Mercury newspaper has reported “Historic bronze plaques stolen from dam”.
In October last year after I visited Clark Dam, one that controls the Derwent River’s waters, I posted my story and at least one of the photographs published in today’s paper appears to be a cut down version of my photographs. I have never added copyright protection to my photos so I am glad to have been of assistance in getting the message out and showing the community what has been removed.
Clark Dam is isolated and remote and few people drive there: the gravel road leading to the Dam at Butlers Gorge would not be driven on in hire cars by tourists, so I am guessing the person who removed these plaques is probably a fisherman who visits the area ready to put a boat out onto Lake King William. It is someone with local knowledge that few people will be in the area. The plaques would have offered some resistance during their removal – they were strongly attached – so it seems to me that a purposeful perhaps pre-planned effort has been made by the thief.
Recently I was in the vicinity, but having previously walked in the area I bypassed the Dam wall so I missed seeing the gaping ‘holes’. I would have been horrified. Whether the taker took the plaques for reasons of greed or souveniring, they are markers of early mid-20th century Tasmanian history and need to be returned – if not reinstalled, then dropped on the doorstep of a police station.
Anyone with any information about the theft is asked to call police on 131 444 or Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.