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Industry mourns passing of Captain Trevor Haworth

The founder of Captain Cook Cruises, Trevor Haworth, passed away on Saturday at the age of 82.

Haworth is known for building cruise operator Captain Cook Cruises, for his role in helping to shape the tourism industry in Australia and as the supporter of many charitable causes including Rotary,

Born in Blackburn Lancashire on June 8, 1931, Haworth moved to Australia in 1954 and after many years at sea, devised the idea of starting a business similar to Manhattan’s Circle Line cruise during a visit to New York.

Captain Cook Cruises Sydney Harbour was born on Australia Day 1970 with Haworth persuading the relevant authorities to allow the business to operate from a berth at the end of the quay at Circular Quay’s Jetty 6 from which it still operates today. It later expanded into the Murray River, the Great Barrier Reef and Fiji.

With international tourists the company’s main focus, Haworth devoted much of his time to the promotion of Australia.

Over 40 years, he was involved in numerous committees and tourism boards as vice chairman Sydney Convention and Visitors Bureau; chairman and vice chairman Inbound Tourism Organisation of Australia; commissioner Australian Tourism Commission; commissioner NSW Tourism Commission; deputy chairman Australian Tourism Industry Association; life member Pacific Asia Travel Association and board member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors.

For his contribution to tourism he received many awards, including the Australian Tourism Award for Outstanding Contribution by an Individual in 1994 and the Member of the Order of Australia on June 5 1985.

At its “peak,” the Captain Cook Cruises group included over 25 ships in four destinations and carried over one million passengers per year on sightseeing and dining cruises and over 40,000 passengers on overnight cruises.

In 2011, Haworth sold the Sydney and Murray River operations of Captain Cook Cruises to the Sealink Travel Group. The Haworth family still owns and operates the successful Fijian operation of Captain Cook Cruises with five vessels and an island today.

SeaLink pronounced it a “solemn day” for the tourism industry.

“Trevor will be long remembered for his pioneering spirit, his considered and entrepreneurial approach but moreover as a statesman and icon in the founding and development of bringing international tourism to Australia,” managing director and chief executive Jeff Ellison said.

Haworth is survived by his wife Geraldine, daughters Jackie Charlton and Allison Haworth West and son Anthony.  He has seven grandchildren – Ben, Emily, Patrick, Scott, Anna, Lucy and Edward. 

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