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Devonport, Tasmania

Coordinates: 41°10′50″S 146°20′47″E / 41.18056°S 146.34639°E / -41.18056; 146.34639
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Devonport and the Mersey River from the air
Devonport is located in Tasmania
Coordinates41°10′50″S 146°20′47″E / 41.18056°S 146.34639°E / -41.18056; 146.34639
Population23,046 (2016)[1]
Time zoneAEST (UTC+10)
 • Summer (DST)AEDT (UTC+11)
LGA(s)City of Devonport
State electorate(s)Braddon
Federal division(s)Braddon
Mean max temp[2] Mean min temp[2] Annual rainfall[2]
17.0 °C
63 °F
8.3 °C
47 °F
773.0 mm
30.4 in

Devonport is a city in northern Tasmania, Australia. It is at the mouth of the Mersey River. In 2016 there were 23,046 people living in Devonport.[1]

The city was settled in the 1850s, with two villages, Formby and Torquay, on the opposite banks of the Mersey River. Torquay on the eastern shore was the largest. It had a police station, post office, magistrate, at least three hotels, shipyards and stores. A river ferry service connected the two villages. Between 1870 and 1880 the shipping industry grew and work was undertaken to deepen the mouth of the river. The first regular steamship services operated to Melbourne, Victoria. The Marine Board building (1882) is the oldest building in Devonport.

In 1889 the Bluff lighthouse was built, and later the railway reached Formby. A wharf was created on the west bank, close to the railway and warehouses. This began a building boom in Formby. In 1890 the public voted to join the two villages together to become the town of Devonport.

The Victoria bridge was opened in 1902 and linked Devonport and East Devonport.

Devonport was proclaimed a city by Prince Charles of Wales on 21 April 1981 in a ceremony at the Devonport Oval.

The cross river ferry service was stopped in 2014 after 160 years of continuous service. The vessel the "Torquay" was taken out of service. It has since restarted.

Devonport suburbs include Highfield. East Devonport suburbs include Pardoe Downs, Rannoch, and Pannorama Heights

Facilities and the arts

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The Rooke Street Mall in Devonport

The main business area is on the west side of the Mersey River. It has a pedestrian mall, cinema, specialty stores, chain stores such as IGA and hotels. There are several restaurants and cafes.

The Devonport Regional Gallery began as "The Little Gallery", private gallery started by Jean Thomas in 1966. The Gallery presents an annual program of exhibitions, education and public programs including events and workshops. Works by local artists are displayed at the North West Regional Craft Centre and gift store.

Tiagarra Aboriginal Culture Centre and Museum displays petroglyphs, designs in rock and displays that show the traditional lifestyle of Tasmanian Aboriginal people.

The Bass Strait Maritime Centre, in the old Harbour Master's House has objects, models and photographs that tell the stories of Bass Strait and Devonport.

A volunteer run vintage railway and museum, the Don River Railway, is at Don, a suburb of Devonport.

The Mersey Community Hospital at Latrobe, is the nearest hospital to Devonport

Devonport's night club was known as "City Limits" in the 1980s, then "The Warehouse" from 1991, and from 2014 as the "House".

Kokoda Barracks is an army barracks in Devonport.

Devonport Airport

Devonport Airport is located at Pardoe Downs about 7 km to the east. The airport is serviced by Bombardier Dash 8 turboprop aircraft, operated by QantasLink, with four daily services to Melbourne, Victoria.

There are several bus companies serving Devonport including Mersey Link, Redline Coaches and Phoenix Coaches. Metropolitan Devonport bus services are limited on Saturdays and there are no services on Sundays or Public holidays.

Freight (Shipping)

Searoad Road Shipping have two roll on roll off ships for general freight between Devonport, Melbourne and King Island. These vessels include MV Searoad Mersey, MV Searoad Mersey II (2016- ) and MV Searoad Tamar.[3]


A rail line still services the ports area of Devonport. The roundhouse and railway maintenance yards on the foreshore of the Mersey River have gone, and there is a park on the site.

Passenger Ferry Terminal

Devonport is the southern terminus for the Spirit of Tasmania ferries – Spirit I and II travel the 11 hours to Melbourne.[4]

Melbourne – Devonport Passenger Ferry History

Vessel Years Shipping Company
SS Oonah 1921–1935 Tasmanian Steamers
SS Loongana 1921–1935 Tasmanian Steamers
SS Nairana 1921–1948 Tasmanian Steamers
SS Taroona 1935–1959 Tasmanian Steamers
MS Princess of Tasmania 1959–1972 Australian National Line
MS Empress of Australia 1972–1986 Australian National Line
MS Abel Tasman 1986–1993 TT-Line Company
Spirit of Tasmania 1993–2002 TT-Line Company
MS Spirit of Tasmania I 2002– TT-Line Company
MS Spirit of Tasmania II 2002– TT-Line Company


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The Devonport area has rich red soils that are ideal for producing vegetable crops (beans, onions, peas, potatoes etc.) There are also large crops of cereals, oil poppies, and pyrethrum.


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Primary schools

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  • Hillcrest Primary School
  • Devonport Primary School
  • Miandetta Primary School
  • East Devonport Primary School
  • Nixon Street Primary School
  • Spreyton Primary School
  • Devonport Christian School
  • Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Primary School

Secondary schools

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Senior secondary education (Years 11–12)

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  • Don College
  • St Brendan-Shaw College

A TasTAFE campus, an adult training institution, is in Valley Road.


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Devonport has an warm-summer mediterranean climate (Köppen climate classification Csb), bordering on an oceanic climate (Köppen climate classification Cfb). It has mild to warm summers, cool and moist winters. It has high humidity (about 70%) all year round. Most days from January to March are pleasantly warm, averaging 19 to 24 °C (66 to 75 °F) with frequent sunshine. The warmest and driest days can reach up to 28 °C (82 °F). Unlike the south and east coasts of Tasmania, humid northerly winds prevent heatwaves and temperatures rarely go above 30 °C (86 °F). Winters are cool and cloudy with frequent light rain; July and August are the wettest months of the year. In winter, because of the constant cloud cover and effect of the sea, winter temperatures rarely drop below 0 °C (32 °F) or rise above 15 °C (59 °F). September to December has mild and windy weather with frequent showers, and occasional warm, sunny breaks.

Climate data for Devonport Airport
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 33.2
Average high °C (°F) 21.2
Daily mean °C (°F) 16.7
Average low °C (°F) 12.2
Record low °C (°F) 4.0
Average rainfall mm (inches) 41.4
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm) 7.5 6.0 7.3 9.4 11.3 12.4 15.0 14.6 14.2 11.8 9.9 8.2 127.6
Average afternoon relative humidity (%) 61 61 59 62 66 68 69 68 66 63 65 61 64
Mean monthly sunshine hours 263.5 240.1 210.8 171.0 142.6 132.0 136.4 151.9 186.0 232.5 246.0 257.3 2,370.1
Source 1: Bureau of Meteorology [2]
Source 2: Bureau of Meteorology (1981–1996 sunshine hours)[5]

Australian rules football

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The Devonport Football Club, Magpies, is an Australian rules football team in the Tasmanian Statewide League. Their home ground is the Devonport Oval.

The East Devonport Football Club, the Swans, is an Australian Rules Football Club, in the North West Football League.

Devon Netball is in Spreyton, just outside Devonport. it is the main centre for netball in the Devonport area.

Rugby union

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The Devonport Rugby Club,[6] a Rugby Union team, plays in the Tasmanian Rugby Union.

Devonport City Football Club an Association Football club that plays in the National Premier Leagues Tasmania.

Athletics, cycling and woodchopping

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The Devonport Athletic Club[7] is a professional athletic club. It hosts part of the Tasmanian Cycling Christmas Carnival Series[8] each year in December, with local and international cyclists. Other sports at the carnivals include athletics and woodchopping. Woodchopping events are also held at the Devonport Agricultural & Pastoral Society Spring Show[9] in November.

The Mersey Valley Devonport Cycling Club host track cycling, the Mersey Valley Tour, Devon 80 Road Race and the Ulverstone Criterium.

Devonport Cricket Club is a cricket team in the North Western Tasmanian Cricket Association.

Devonport Hockey teams play in the North and North West Hockey roster of Hockey Tasmania.


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Devonport Warriors are a basketball team in the North West Basketball Union.

The Devonport Golf Club has been home to the Tasmanian Open and Tasmanian Seniors Open.

Harness racing and horse racing

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The Devonport Harness Racing Club holds harness racing events at the Devonport Showgrounds.

The Devonport Cup a horse race is held annually in January at the Spreyton racecourse. There is a gazetted local holiday for the event.

Power boats

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Power Boat racing takes place at the Devonport Annual Regatta held each March long weekend. The Regatta was first held in 1958.

Swimming and aquatic sports

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The Splash Devonport Aquatic and Leisure Centre has a world class gym and indoor swimming pool and is based within the Don Reserve.

The Devonport Tennis Club and East Devonport Tennis Club play in the Tennis North West Association.

The Devonport recreation centre hosts weekly futsal games where notable players such as Callan Rigby and Liam Everett ferociously play.

Notable sportspeople

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  • David Foster (woodchopper)
  • Nita Burke (basketball)
  • Corey Cadby (darts player)
  • Owen Kelly (NASCAR and V8 Supercar driver)

VFL/AFL players

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Notable players that went on to play in the VFL/AFL:

  • Darrel Baldock (St Kilda)
  • Graham Wright (Collingwood)
  • Grant Birchall (Hawthorn)
  • Brady Rawlings (North Melbourne)
  • Jade Rawlings (Hawthorn, Western Bulldogs, North Melbourne)
  • Matthew Richardson (Richmond)
  • Ben Harrison (Carlton, Richmond, Western Bulldogs)
  • Dion Scott (Sydney, Brisbane Bears, Brisbane Lions)
  • Matthew Febey (Melbourne)
  • Joel Rossegger (Victoria)
  • Steven Febey (Melbourne)

Notable people

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  1. 1.0 1.1 "2016 Census QuickStats". Australian Bureau of Statistics. Australian Bureau of Statistics. 2017-10-23. Archived from the original on 2019-01-13. Retrieved 2019-01-14.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 "Climate statistics for Devonport Airport". bom.gov.au. Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  3. "Tasmanian Shipping". Archived from the original on 25 July 2015. Retrieved 25 July 2015.
  4. "Devonport to Melbourne Ferry Journey Length". Archived from the original on 19 March 2011. Retrieved 9 March 2011.
  5. "Climate statistics for Forthside Climate Research Station (1981–2010)". bom.gov.au. Bureau of Meteorology. Retrieved 28 October 2017.
  6. "Devonport Rugby Club". devonportbulls.rugbynet.com.au. Archived from the original on 13 September 2009. Retrieved 26 June 2009.
  7. "Devonport Athletic Club". tas.cycling.org.au. Archived from the original on 11 April 2009. Retrieved 26 June 2009.
  8. "Sports Carnival Association of Tasmania". tascarnivals.com. Archived from the original on 12 April 2009. Retrieved 26 June 2009.
  9. "Agricultural Show Council of Tasmania". ascti.com.au. Retrieved 26 June 2009.