Bass Strait Maritime Centre

Legacy of Tea Tree Lane

SIGN NUMBER 7 – End of Tea Tree Lane

Directly in front of you, are the remains of a small bay where Edward Higgs built the ship Manuka a vessel that was renamed Peerless and later wrecked at King Island.

Behind you on the bank, is “Arnwood” the house where Edward Higgs lived, near the shipyard he established on the banks of the Mersey River. The depressed ground below “Arnwood” is the site of the old stone quarry, this was filled-in by the Devonport City Council in 1987.

Arnwood by Kath Cocker. Courtesy of the Devonport Regional Gallery.

Higgs built another home by the same name which was relocated to Hawley in the late 1950s, to make way for the new ferry terminal.

To the right, is the start of the John Palmer Walking Track, leading to Moorland’s Point. This 3.6 km track was developed by the Rotary Club of Devonport Southeast in 1996 with local youth programs providing the workforce managed by Rotarian and Devonport identity John Palmer.

An easy grade walk, with coastal aspects, changing from ocean views to dunes and coastal vegetation, the track follows the old Northdown services route. You might even see Pacific Gulls or an Albatross!

The story of Edward Higgs is told in Romance of the Mersey, Torquay, Tasmania late 1890’s-early 1900’s by Peter E Higgs, which you can access by clicking here.


  • “With The Pioneers” by Charles Ramsay
  • “The Quiet Achievers” by Maureen Bennett