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Table of Contents

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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The South Australian Divisional Office

Like NSW and Victoria, South Australia had a long history of colonial meteorological development. Sir Charles Todd, Government Astronomer and Meteorologist and Superintendent of Telegraphs from 1855 to December 1906 was perhaps the most famous of the early meteorologists; famous not only for his meteorological activities but more widely for the construction of the overland telegraph from Adelaide to Darwin, a feat which revolutionised communications between the UK and the Australian colonies.

Meteorological observations at the newly established observatory began in 1860. Todd retired as Government Astronomer in December 1906 and R. F. Griffiths was acting Government Astronomer and Meteorologist until December 1907, and G. F. Dodswell was acting Government Meteorologist until April 1909. E. Bromley had worked with Todd in the Adelaide Observatory before the latter's retirement and took up appointment as Divisional Meteorologist for South Australia and the Northern Territory.

Bromley continued as Divisional Meteorologist until August 1947, when, on his retirement after 39 years in the same position in the Bureau, and some earlier years as a meteorologist in the SA Astronomical Observatory, he was succeeded by G. W. Mackey. George Mackey had previously served in the Sydney Divisional Office as principal assistant to B. W. Newman who was acting as Deputy Director, NSW, and had occupied the position of Divisional Meteorologist in Tasmania following the death of A. C. Coombes.

After little more than a year as Deputy Director, South Australia and Northern Territory, George Mackey was appointed Deputy Director, WA, and was succeeded by H. E. Banfield who served as Deputy Director, South Australia, from 1948 until his retirement in 1952.

Banfield was a member of the first AIF in World War I. He served in Egypt, Gallipoli, Sinai and France, winning his commission in 1916 and being awarded a Military Cross for bravery in September 1918. Banfield had joined the Sydney Divisional Office in 1919 and was transferred to Adelaide as a meteorologist in 1939.

As in the other Divisional Offices, the Adelaide office saw an influx of younger meteorologists with higher academic qualifications and with the advantage of instruction in the Bureau's Training School in Melbourne. They included Errol Mizon and Bruce Mason.

Errol was responsible for supervision of forecast and warning services while Bruce (a former classmate of mine in the Bureau's Training School in 1940) took over the role of climatologist.

The Divisional Office for South Australia had overall responsibility for the Bureau's offices in the Northern Territory although the Bureau's Central Office Aviation Section in Melbourne always took a keen interest in these offices. After World War II the South Australian Divisional Office continued to be responsible for routine administrative matters relating to the Bureau's offices at Darwin, Daly Waters and Alice Springs.

People in Bright Sparcs - Banfield, Henry Evans; Mackey, George William; Newman, Bernard William (Bernie); Todd, Charles; 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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