When the Bubonic plague broke out, the British Government had to find somewhere else to send the prisoners, so they decided to start a convict settlement in New South Wales.  This was late 1786. This would allow England to claim Australia and keep Spain or France from taking it. Captain Arthur Phillip was chosen as the Leader of the First Fleet of convicts to Botany Bay. There were eleven ships in the First Fleet with six of them being convict ship that had specially built prisoners quarters below the decks. Around 1500 men, women and children sailed in the First Fleet that left on 12 May 1787.The First Fleet reached Botany Bay on 18 January 1788.

Australia Day Celebrations of First Landing enactments.

If your organisation is holding a First Landing celebration or Reenactment Click here.