You are cordially invited to Austen-Con
November 16th, 9am – 5pm

Hosted by 24 Carrot Productions and The Mission to Seafarers – Victoria.

Following our first successful Austen Con in 2018 we will be back for another day of Jane Austen and Regency-era activities to celebrate and appreciate the many facets of her work.

See the 24 Carrot Productions site here for a schedule of the day and to register for special events of the day!

Heritage Tours

Heritage Tours – Currently not available whilst we renovate. ETA November

The MtSV has operated from the now heritage-listed building at 717 Flinders Street since 1917. The building is iconic to the City of Melbourne and regarded for its perpetual service of responding to the unique circumstances of those who live and work at sea. The historical Mission complex is architecturally significant as being a fine urban example of the Arts and Crafts Style in Melbourne and you are invited to take a tour.

Led by our knowledgable volunteers you will be able to step inside and discover the original use of the Norla Dome, discover our hidden garden and enjoy morning tea in the courtyard.

The tour will take you through the entire operational areas of Mission to Seafarers site, encouraging visitors to explore the premises; discovering historical gems room-to-room. There are  heritage interpretation panels and a number of display cases containing historical artefacts stretching beyond the Mission’s 100 years of operation at it’s now heritage listed building complex at 717 Flinders Street, purpose built for seafarers in 1917.

When: Every second Saturday or the last Thursday of the month or by appointment for groups of 10 or more.

Cost is $15 plus booking fee.

Any questions email:

Early Origins: Permanent Collection

Early Origins Exhibition – currently closed whilst we renovate

Permanent Collection
 July 1 2019 until November 2019 for renovations.

Discover the Early Origins Exhibition on a self-guided tour of the MtSV.
A wonderful display that was launched in the Centenary year of MtSV, 2017, at its iconic Flinders street address, featuring historical items that represent the early days of the Mission to Seafarers, the Ladies Harbour Lights Guild and the Port of Melbourne. Discovered just over ten years ago beneath the stage of the site’s Flying Angel Club, and painstakingly put together by dedicated historians; Early Origins is a collection of newly-discovered stories of Melbourne’s maritime history.

The exhibition spans the entire operational areas of Mission to Seafarers site, encouraging visitors to explore the premises for themselves; discovering historical gems room-to-room, guided by way-finding signage. Heritage interpretation panels and a number of display cases contain historical artefacts stretching beyond the Mission’s 100 years of operation at its now heritage listed building complex at 717 Flinders Street, purpose built for seafarers in 1917.

Further to its significance of capturing Melbourne’s maritime history, Early Origins represents the largest and most complete collection of material relating to seafarers’ welfare in Australia, as well as largest and most complete collection of material relating to the international organisation The Mission to Seafarers in the country.

We discovered the items by pure coincidence and when we started cataloguing them. We were captivated by the stories they told about the people who came here. Not just the seamen who were welcomed from across the world, but also the hundreds of volunteers from all walks of life across Victoria


Early Origins also delves into the foundations, design and construction of the Mission. The heritage-listed complex itself was originally designed in 1913 by esteemed architect Walter Richmond Butler, and is a merging of Arts and Crafts and Spanish Mission Revival architectural styles.

Just been & now gone

Meditating with baby goats

See Karmably for further info.

I know what you’re thinking. “Wait, but why are we meditating with this much cuteness? Won’t I be even MORE distracted?

The short answer is yes. The long answer is that Breathe In & Bleat Out is a metaphor for what meditating actually feels like when you first start. Your first meditation sitting isn’t going to be perfect, and it certainly won’t be still. You’ll have thoughts, feelings, memories and dreams niggling at you, gnawing on you and clamouring for attention.

What to expect:
· Light stretching to still the body
· Sound Mediation to still the mind
· Play! Fluffy cuddles from a furry friend

Just like our furry friends, these cuties nibble, nuzzle, dribble and piddle, but I can promise you won’t get worked up over it. In fact, I can guarantee you’ll leave with nothing but a smile! And maybe a few selfies (Good luck trying to get a baby goat to pose!) Instead of criticising yourself for being unable to sit still in perfect, spiritual silence, you’ll learn to compassionately observe this chaos, embrace the moment and stop kicking yourself for not being so damn perfect all the time.

Why we chose baby goats:
1) Fewer allergies than cats & dogs
2) Cuddling causes warm fuzzy feelings in humans and animals! Whether from our human friends or furry ones, cuddling is proven to release oxytocin, which boosts the immune system, reduces stress and relieves pain! “Oxytocin is a natural stress reliever… it acts on our brain to diminish anxiety and induce relaxation” – Harvard Health Letter.
3) Researchers in the UK have found evidence that goats are just as clever as dogs, and build complex emotional relationships with humans!
4) Stanford PAWS program has been using animal therapy for 20 years to raise the spirits of hospitalised patients. Animal therapy has also been found to reduce cortisol in Autistic children by up to 48%, as well as relieve symptoms of PTSD and schizophrenia.

Your friendly warning: Baby goats don’t have complete control of their bladders & can get super excited without warning! The Karmably Cleaning Crew is always standing by for mishaps, but please come prepared for the worst. AKA go digging for your daggiest gym shirt and throw it over those nice, new tights when the mischief begins!

Our baby goats come from a variety of centres. ABC Animal Farm began their mobile farm service as a means to rescue, feed and rehome neglected, surrendered and abandoned animals. Some of the furbabies in your class are rescues, and others are bred on the farm. Once animals are over 12 months of age, they live out their retirement in families on acreage, and are never returned to the dairy or meat industry.

See you in the Zen Den!

Encountering People, Places, Things at the Mission to Seafarers. A Photographic Exhibition.

June 21st – July 5th, 2019

A historical & contemporary photographic narrative of people, places & things associated with the Mission to Seafarers Victoria.
Curated by Uma Kothari, Professor of Migration and Postcolonial Studies at the University of Manchester, with contemporary photographs by Nicholas Walton-Healey.

‘Tilting Away…Leaning In…’

Tuesday 4 – Friday 13 June, 2019

An exhibition of photography by Megan Williamson as part of the Photography Studies College Master of Arts.
After an illness, Megan was encouraged to rekindle her love of taking photographs and picked-up her grandfather’s 1960’s Agfa CLACK medium format film camera. The large-scale colour photographs in this exhibition depict themes of home, ancestry, memory and daydreaming, travels through Europe and returning home to Australia.

Enyato Duo presents: Nine Fathom Deep – percussion and woodwind
May 24th 

Join Thea Rossen (Percussion) and Luke Carbon (Bass Clarinet) as they present a program of works that evoke epic journeys on the ocean. With pieces by Samantha Wolff, Toru Takemitsu, Thea Rossen and Elliot Cooper Cole, the program will feature the world premiere of ‘The Sea Meets Infinity’ by Paul Dean, a work commissioned especially for this concert.
The venue with its nautical history, is a unique dome shape that lends itself to an intimate concert experience.

And some in dreams assurèd were
Of the Spirit that plagued us so;
Nine fathom deep he had followed us
From the land of mist and snow.
-Samuel Taylor Coleridge

Good Beer Week, the Mission to Seafarers, and Wildflower Brewing and Blending present: Barrels in the Dome
May 16, 2019

“In Lieu of a round table big enough, we decided on a round venue”. Join Ben Kraus from Bridge Road Brewers and Topher Boehm from Wildflower Brewing and Blending in the amazing Norla Dome for a unique opportunity to hang with these affable mavericks of Australian craft beer.

Ben and Topher will guide you through a selection of their latest limited releases as you hit the opulent grazing table before your hosts pour and wax lyrical about some of the drinks that have inspired their journey as brewers. Grazing Table by the legends from Firecracker Event !

Practice Makes Perfect: Skilled Artisan Exhibition
April 27 – 28, 2019

To coincide with the National Trust’s Heritage Festival, the Mission to Seafarers is hosting an exciting exhibition of skilled trades-persons and members of the Artisan’s Guild of Australia with display and demonstrations of their talent and craftsmanship. There will be a BBQ in the Courtyard (thanks to the men from OSSA), and bevi’s at the bar!

Including the following makers:

Duncan McHarg – bespoke boot and shoemaker
Bruce Hutton – stained glass artist and restorer
Bruce Walker – gold leaf and decorative lining and scrolling techniques
Robert Mawditt -painter and decorator
Gordon Byrne – wrought iron design and construction
Henry Hakopian – woodworker
David Stephenson – traditional sign writing
James Charlwood – master stonemason and conservator
Keiran Dunleavy – solid plasterer – heritage specialist
and more including the Waverly Spinners & Weavers!

Drop in any time over the weekend and marvel at their work and the beautiful Mission to Seafarers Victoria building.
Entry by donation in support of the Mission.

Maritime Heritage Port Cruises from Mission to Seafarers to Alma Doepel

At the Mission: Practice Makes Perfect: Skilled Artisan Exhibition
At the Alma: Open Day
April 28, 2019

Take this rare opportunity to travel on a historic vessel along the Yarra River from the Mission to Seafarers to the Alma Doepel (or vice versa) via one of Melbourne’s busy ports, Appleton Dock, to view the giant vessels in Melbourne’s shipping hub. The tour is designed for visitors to enjoy the heritage events at the Mission to Seafarers where you will be treated to an exhibition of skilled heritage artisans, ‘Practice Makes Perfect’, throughout the heritage listed building, and the Alma Doepel – a restoration project of a 115 year old tall-ship – as part of the National Trust’s Heritage Festival. This tour is offered for one day only!

A day to explore Melbourne’s considerable Maritime Heritage!

Melbourne Music Week: A Nice Warm Bath

November 24th, 2018
‘A Nice Warm Bath’ is an immersive audio-visual experience featuring ambient & experimental producers, sound and visual artists exploring light, scent and projection. The Norla Dome at Mission to Seafarers will be a canvas for visuals reacting to atmospheric soundscapes, creating a restorative colour bath for people to slow down and sink into.

Whilst the everyday strips us of energy, ‘A Nice Warm Bath’ will soothe and replenish as sound and light transforms the dome into a healing, meditative space for the final night of Melbourne Music Week.

Come take a dip with: ~ Anatole / SYD, ~ Carla Zimbler, Hymns [DJ]

ANL Maritime Art Prize Exhibition 2018

The 2018 Maritime Art Awards Exhibition was open  from 5th – 26th October, 2018.
Visit to see the 80 finalist works and place a vote in the People’s Choice Awards.

Image: 2018 Maritime Art Award Winner, ‘Aye Aye Captain’ by Joni Dennis

Melbourne Writers Festival: ‘a matter of life & death’

We hosted a number of events for the Melbourne Writers Festival this year!
Over two culture filled weekends: August 25 – 26, and September 1 – 2, 2018

Click here for the program at the Mission.

Open House Melbourne @ the Mission
Saturday 28th – Sunday 29th July, 2018

The Spanish Mission/Arts and Crafts-style building complex was designed by Walter Butler. It was constructed in 1917, with the addition of the Norla Dome completed in 1919. The funds to build the complex came from fundraising by the Ladies Harbour Lights Guild (established in 1906), and a government grant. The building is significant for operating with its original purpose as a mission to the welfare of seafarers for 100 years. The historical Mission complex is architecturally significant as being a fine urban example of the Arts and Crafts Style in Melbourne. Before coming to Australia, Walter Butler was greatly influenced by the Arts and Crafts Movement in his native England. He was a popular society architect in Melbourne, and designed many fine houses in Toorak. Today the complex consists of the St Peter, the Mariner Chapel, an extensive clubroom and administration area, the Chaplain’s house, a small cottage, and the Norla Dome. The Norla Dome was originally built as a gymnasium for visiting seafarers to maintain their fitness whilst onshore, and now serves as a unique and versatile events space.


6 – 17 December, 2017
After the sell-out success of their 2016 season Jala, Apollon Studios returned with Agni, the second production in their series of the five Vedic Elements Works; Water, Fire, Wind, Earth and Aether.

Agni (ægni/AG-nee)  a celebration of all the aspects of Fire and its power to protect, give life, and destroy.

Agni featured a two week exhibition of paintings and drawings by Adelaide graphic artist Krystal Brock and painter Malcolm Berry, and a dynamic multilayered performance running for FOUR NIGHTS ONLY. This second installment of the five planned events once again brought together a diverse team of artists and creatives and is a swirling dervish of theatre, music, and visual art. Featuring premiere works by award-winning playwright Robert Reid, musician Tim Wild (Taxiride), composer David Balaban and Artistic Director of Apollon Studios, Malcolm Berry, Melbourne art and theater lovers were invited to experience this unique, one off celebration of the power of Fire.

Text written by Robert Reid ~ Directed by Scott Gooding ~ Original Music by David Balaban and Tim Wild ~ Performed by Malcolm Berry, Anna Kennedy, Jack Sheppard, and Krystal Brock ~ Musicians: Ash Galea, Christy Flavell, Kavita Kalyan and Aman Kalyan ~ Featuring work by artists Malcolm Berry and Krystal Brock ~ Curated by Cathy Horsley

Sounding Histories 2017

Sounding Histories

Works still on display from Catherine Bell and Michael Needham!
A Deakin University and Mission to Seafarers Victoria research initiative and public art event of site responsive artworks and performances. Sounding Histories is one of a number of significant events marking the Mission’s 160th year and the centenary in 2017 of the current Flinders St site.

Painters & Dockers, The Rogue Academy, Maree Clarke, Bishop & Reis
Catherine Bell, Michael Needham, Michael Graeve.
Curated by Anne Scott Wilson & Cameron Bishop