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Table of Contents

War History of the Australian Meteorological Service




Chapter 1: D.Met.S.—Australia's Wartime Weather Service

Chapter 2: The Weather Factor in Warfare

Chapter 3: Met in the Retreat

Chapter 4: Met in the Advance

Chapter 5: Meteorology in Aviation

Chapter 6: Central Forecasting Services

Chapter 7: Met With the Army

Chapter 8: Research and Personnel Training

Chapter 9: Instrumental Development and Maintenance

Chapter 10: Scientific Developments in the RAAF Meteorological Service

Chapter 11: Divisional Bureaux and Their Work

Appendix 1: List of Reports Provided by D.Met.S. for Advances Operational Planning and Other Purposes

Appendix 2: List of Service Personnel RAAF Meteorological Service

Appendix 3: List of Civilian Personnel Who Worked Together with Service Personnel of the RAAF Meteorological Service

Appendix 4: List of Locations at which RAAF Meteorological Service Personnel Served


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Preface (continued)

The cover and front page of Metarch Papers No. 10 state "compiled by Thomas Haldane". This is a change from the original, which did not name any person as being responsible for part or all of the document. The change has been made at the request of Bill Gibbs, the Executive Editor of Metarch, in order to give due recognition to Thomas Haldane's major role in the preparation of the document. The editors and the Bureau of Meteorology did not feel that he should be shown simply as the author, because the changes made by H. N. Warren go beyond what can be considered as only editorial amendments and are more in the nature of contributions. Also, archived Bureau files state that Thomas Haldane was employed in organising material for the war history of the RAAF Meteorological Service and it is reasonable to assume that he would have been expected to use without change, apart from editorial amendments, reports already prepared by others, particularly on the more complex wartime activities.

For reasons unknown, the work needed to complete and publish the report was never undertaken. No copy was kept on Bureau files, however, a copy found in the estate of a deceased former Bureau officer was returned to the Bureau by his widow. It was subsequently placed in the Head Office Library and rediscovered in 1991 by John Cornall-Reilly of the Melbourne Frosterley Club during a search for material on the history of the RAAF Meteorological Service.

Investigations by Bill Gibbs of files held in archives show that the draft report was lent, in 1949, to D. P. Mellor, whose work Australia in the War of 1939–1945, Series Four (Civil), published by the Australian War Memorial, Canberra, in 1958, contains a chapter on Australia's wartime meteorological activities. It is known that Mellor's work influenced that of Joyce (Metarch Papers No. 5) because Joyce quotes from it. Thus it can be reasonably assumed that the report compiled by Haldane influenced the two already published histories of the RAAF Meteorological Service.

It has not been possible for Ian Forrest and I to verify all the accounts in the manuscript, so we decided to publish it with only editorial corrections, some minor changes to wording to make the meaning clear to a present day reader and the movement of the lists of the reports prepared by the Service to Appendix 1. Also, the pictures and captions are different, in many instances, to those included in the manuscript and detail of Meteorological Charters' Courses Nos 30 and 31 has been added to the list at the end of Chapter 8. We took the liberty of changing the dates on the manuscript, given as from July 1940 to August 1946, to now read April 1941 to July 1946, to reflect the period of the formal existence of the RAAF Meteorological Service. However, it is worth noting that in July 1940, in accordance with a decision taken in 1939 that if war eventuated, the meteorological service was transferred from the Department of the Interior to the Department of Air where it operated as the Directorate of Meteorological Services, and that some former civilian meteorological personnel were in uniform prior to the establishment of the RAAF Meteorological Service in April 1941. Also, the manuscript refers to two Squadron Leaders J. Hogan without distinguishing between them except by the work which they undertook. For the present day reader we have identified one as J. (Doc) Hogan, an OIC of Port Moresby and the officer responsible for developing the meteorological service for the Perth-Colombo flights who later became Regional Director, South Australia, and John Hogan (1896–1970) who was in charge of training for much of the war, later becoming Regional Director, New South Wales, and whose memoirs are published in Metarch Papers No. 2.

Organisations in Australian Science at Work - Frosterley Club

People in Bright Sparcs - Haldane, Thomas; Hogan, John; Hogan, John (Doc); Joyce, John; Warren, Herbert Norman

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Haldane, T. 1997 'War History of the Australian Meteorological Service in the Royal Australian Air Force April 1941 to July 1946', Metarch Papers, No. 10 October 1997, Bureau of Meteorology

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