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Memories of the Bureau, 1946 to 1962





Chapter 1: The Warren Years, 1946 to 1950
Warren the Man
Warren Joins the Bureau
Wartime Perceptions and Attitudes
Return to Civvy Street
People in the Bureau
Re-establishing and Reorganising the Bureau
Reorganisation of Central Office
The Position of Chief Scientific Officer
Post-War Reorganisation
The Haldane Story
Public Weather Services
The New South Wales Divisional Office
The Victorian Divisional Office
The Queensland Divisional Office
The South Australian Divisional Office
The Western Australian Divisional Office
The Tasmanian Divisional Office
Pre-war Services for Civil Aviation
Post-War Meteorological Service for Aviation
Indian Ocean Survey Flight
The Aviation Field Staff
Synoptic Analysis, Prognosis and Forecasting
Antarctic and Southern Ocean Meteorology
A Wider Scientific Horizon
Research, Development and Special Investigations
Analysts' Conference, April 1950
Instruments and Observations
Radar Winds and Radar Weather Watch
Climate and Statistics
The Universities
Achievements of the Warren Years

Chapter 2: International Meteorology

Chapter 3: The Timcke Years, 1950 to 1955

Chapter 4: A Year at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology

Chapter 5: The Dwyer Years, 1955 to 1962

Chapter 6: A Springboard for the Future

Appendix 1: References

Appendix 2: Reports, Papers, Manuscripts

Appendix 3: Milestones

Appendix 4: Acknowledgements

Appendix 5: Summary by H. N. Warren of the Operation of the Meteorological Section of Allied Air Headquarters, Brisbane, 1942–45



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Warren Joins the Bureau (continued)

The RAAF Meteorological Service was created in April 1941, Warren having acted as Director of Meteorology from April 1940. Warren was given the rank of group captain as head of that service and also acted as Director of Meteorology for the civilian staff who remained in the Bureau.

The majority of the male staff of the Bureau joined the RAAF in April 1941. Apart from a few who joined other branches of the armed services, the remaining male staff and all the female staff remained in the Bureau.

As the war progressed the RAAF Meteorological Service grew rapidly as suitably qualified RAAF personnel were mustered for training in the RAAF Meteorological Service. Later, after the formation of the Women's Australian Auxiliary Air Force (WAAAF), women in uniform joined the RAAF Meteorological Service.

At war's end some of the WAAAF who had served in the RAAF Meteorological Service chose to join the Bureau.

Stories of the RAAF Meteorological Service appear in the Metarch Papers of Cornish (1996), Gibbs (1995), Haldane (1997), Hannay (1994), Joyce (1993), Stout (1996) and Swan (1996).

Mellor (1958), in his contribution to the official war history, devoted a chapter to the history of the RAAF Meteorological Service.

The Haldane history, prepared in 1946 and edited in some detail by H. N. Warren and more recently by Don Handcock, gives the most comprehensive story but future historians will find all of the above publications contain valuable material.

When in 1944 the defeat of Germany and Italy in Europe and Japan in the Pacific seemed likely, H. N. Warren began to formulate plans for demobilisation of the RAAF Meteorological Service and the re-establishment and reorganisation of the Bureau. I have a copy of a letter from Warren dated 21 August 1945 addressed to Secretary, Department of Air (with a copy to Secretary, Department of the Interior). The copy bears no file number and was presumably confidential in nature.

In his letter Warren states that during the war he had retained responsibility for direction of the civilian component of the Meteorological Branch, Department of Air in addition to his responsibility for the RAAF Meteorological Service.

People in Bright Sparcs - Cornish, Allan William; Haldane, Thomas; Handcock, Don; Hannay, Alexander Keith (Keith); Joyce, John; Stout, Reginald William (Reg); Swan, Keith; Warren, Herbert Norman

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Gibbs, W. J. 1999 'A Very Special Family: Memories of the Bureau of Meteorology 1946 to 1962', Metarch Papers, No. 13 May 1999, Bureau of Meteorology

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