1. The Cerberus is one of the most historically important naval vessels in existence with worldwide significance in the history of naval architecture.
2. The design of the Cerberus by the eminent naval architect E.J. Reed, chief constructor for the British Admiralty, was the prototype upon which all major battleships from 1885-1905 were based. Representing a complete break from established tradition, it was known as a turret ship or breastwork monitor.
3. The first breastwork monitor built, she commenced the development of the ironclad battleships and is now the only surviving vessel of her type in the world.
4. Cerberus was the first armoured fighting ship built for service in Australia and the first designed to operate without sails.
5. Cerberus was the flagship of the Victorian navy and in 1911, following federation, became part of the newly formed Royal Australian Navy.
6. Ordered on behalf of the people of Melbourne in 1866 and serving always within Port Phillip Bay, she has closer ties with the history of Melbourne than any other vessel.
7. Cerberus played a key role in the numerous naval mock battles and exercises with the shore forts at Queenscliff and the Heads.
8. She was used as a floating store for explosives during World War II and was used as a submarine depot ship.
9. The Cerberus history of service was such that the Royal Australian Navy named its base at Flinders after the ship.
10. By 1924 the Cerberus was sold as scrap, and most of the valuable parts were stripped from the ship. The City of Sandringham purchased the hull, together with turrets, guns and anchors. The Cerberus was scuttled at Half Moon Bay and has served as a breakwater for sixty years.
11. The hull, internal divisions, turrets and four guns survive at Half Moon Bay. The anchor is at the Sandringham Yacht Club. The mast is at Williamstown Yacht Club. The binnacle and other small items are held at HMAS Cerberus (Flinders Naval Depot).