The Big Boat Shed and the Boat Shop (circa 1947 and 2021)
12-14 Burma Road
This area of the Lunenburg waterfront is known as the Shipyards. Shipbuilding began here in 1900 when Richard W. Smith and George A. Rhuland formed their partnership. The ships built by Smith and Rhuland tell the history of shipbuilding in Lunenburg. Bluenose, Queen of the North Atlantic, launched from this yard in 1921. The Big Boat Shed (c1947) was built to accommodate the construction of larger vessels as well as small pleasure and fishing boats. More than 380 ships, including Bluenose II (1963) and replicas of HMS Bounty (1960) and HMS Rose (1970), were constructed at this site. The shipyard was purchased by the Province of NS in 2006 as part of Lunenburg’s “working waterfront” development project. The restoration and expansion of the Big Boat Shed took place between 2019 and 2021 and was funded by both the provincial and federal governments. The ceiling arches of the Shed were repaired and a new truss system with metal reinforcement and steel cables between the arches was installed. The end doors were reinstated as was the concrete slipway. New windows were installed. On the northern end of the Big Boat Shed, a new addition, the Boat Shop, was constructed to accommodate a hands-on small boat building facility and an interpretation centre with new viewing areas, exhibits and interactive workshops organized by the Fisheries Museum of the Atlantic.