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Table of Contents

Glimpse of the RAAF Meteorological Service




Chapter 1: Growing Up
Early Australian Meteorologists
Early Days in the Bureau
Forecasters' Training Course
My Classmates
Reorganisation of the Bureau
Love and Marriage

Chapter 2: Port Moresby Before Pearl Harbour

Chapter 3: Port Moresby After Pearl Harbour

Chapter 4: Allied Air Force HQ and RAAF Command, Brisbane

Chapter 5: Japan Surrenders and We Are Demobilised



Appendix 1: References

Appendix 2: Milestones

Appendix 3: Papers Published in Tropical Weather Research Bulletins

Appendix 4: Radiosonde Observations 1941–46


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Love and Marriage (continued)

I sought Normie Warren's permission to stop over in Sydney on my way to Port Moresby to be married to Audrey. His immediate reaction was to ask 'Don't you know there's a war on?'. Eventually he relented to the extent of granting me a couple of days leave. I left Melbourne in the latter half of September 1940 with his good wishes and with a folio of Norman Lindsay paintings presented to Audrey and me by Bryan Rofe and my other classmates.

One bombshell dropped by Normie was that I would need a car to commute from the town of Port Moresby to the Kila Kila aerodrome where the meteorological office was located. My explanation of the modest state of my bank balance did not impress him although he softened the blow by informing me that the Department would meet the cost of freighting the car by sea to Port Moresby and pay a mileage allowance to cover the cost of petrol. There was also the advantage that my civilian status meant that, as a married couple, Audrey and I were eligible for a Commonwealth Government residence in Port Moresby at a reasonable rental.

I took the train to Sydney and we were duly married by the rector of the church where we had first met. My mother and my Aunt Agnes (my late father's sister) helped Audrey with the wedding arrangements and allowed us to have the wedding reception in her home. My favourite uncle (my mother's brother—a World War I veteran) gave the bride away.

Keith Hannay, who had been a member of the 1937 forecasters' course and who was based in Sydney (and whom I was to see again in the near future) was my 'best man'. Keith was kind enough to sell me his 1928 Chevrolet Tourer for a very reasonable price and arrangements were made for it to be shipped to Port Moresby on a Burns Philp motor vessel (either the MV MacDhui or the MV Montoro).

People in Bright Sparcs - Hannay, Alexander Keith (Keith); Rofe, Bryan; Warren, Herbert Norman

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Gibbs, W. J. 1995 'A Glimpse of the RAAF Meteorological Service', Metarch Papers, No. 7 March 1995, Bureau of Meteorology

© Online Edition Australian Science and Technology Heritage Centre and Bureau of Meteorology 2001
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