Captain Bligh – Great Barrier Reef and Torres Straight / HMS Bounty / Channel 4

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    George Hill

      Hi all,

      I’m a researcher working for a TV production company called Windfall Films in London.

      I’m currently working on background research for an ambitious new documentary series for Channel 4. The programme takes a group of modern men who re-enact the voyage of Captain William Bligh and his men after the infamous mutiny on the Bounty in 1789. The crew of our sailboat – a replica of the vessel upon which Bligh and his men were cast adrift – chart a course of roughly 4,000 miles from Tonga to East Timor. The crew are given precisely the same rations and equipment that Bligh himself had. More information on the Channel 4 website –

      I have been reading extensively from the two logs of the voyage – those of Bligh and his sailing master John Fryer. Bligh in particular describes the various islands they stop off at through the Great Barrier Reef and Torres Straight – notably Restoration Island, Sunday Island, Turtle Island etc. However, there are many for which he gives coordinates and a description but that are not named. Despite my reading and talking with naval historians, nobody seems to have detailed information for which islands it was he stopped off at.

      Ideally, I would like to see a detailed map of Bligh’s route up through the GBR and the Torres Straight. Failing this, I would be hugely grateful to anyone who might be able to shed some light on this – what was his route? Which islands is he describing? Why are we able to accurately name some, but not others?

      I would be more than happy to discuss this over the phone. Feel free to contact me Monday – Friday on 0207 288 2158

      I look forward to your responses!

      Thank you in advance


      James W

        Hello George,

        We have all the charts of Bligh’s voyage and offered our assistance to this project back at the start of last year.

        My father and I worked with Ron Ware on his Bligh voyage reenactment back in 1984 and on the Bounty film in 1984. I also worked on the Channel 4 documentary on Channel 5 back in 2002.

        Happy to assist if required.

        Best regards
        James Walters

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