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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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Instruments and Observations (continued)

The hard work involved in converting the naval radars into wind-finders is described by Cornish (1996) and by Max Cassidy (1994) in his memoirs which were published privately in 1998. Reg Stout (1996) also outlines his work with the radars and other instruments. I have learnt recently that Ralph de la Lande, who joined the Bureau at a later date, worked on these Bureau radars in DCA in these early years.

Cornish describes how he incurred Warren's wrath when he expressed doubts about the wisdom of acquiring the naval radars. The Bureau's experience with the radars was to justify the doubts of Cornish but Warren's judgement was also correct because radar wind-finders were badly needed and it would be some considerable time before such instruments became commercially available.

Cornish (1996) tells how he sought other employment opportunities after his difference of opinion with Warren and how he accepted a position with the Research Laboratory of the PMG's Department. This was a serious loss to the Bureau. George Elston, a member of Cornish's staff, temporarily became head of the Instrument Section but being a member of the wartime staff, was demobilised. The responsibility of taking control was given to my friend and colleague of the 1940 training course H. W. A. N. (Bill) Brann.

Before joining the Bureau's forecasters' training course in 1940 Bill Brann was science master at Ballarat High School. He had a B.Sc. degree from the University of Melbourne with majors in chemistry, physics and pure mathematics. I remember Bill well from our 1940 training course. Contrasting with the exuberance of those like Bryan Rofe and Jim Williams, Bill was reserved, serious and studious. Most of us on the course were in our early 20s and unmarried. Bill, Harry Ashton and W. J. (Greenie) Greenfield were older and married. Bill was 29.

On completion of the forecasters' course in September 1940 Bill worked as a forecaster at Western Junction, Essendon and Sydney before donning RAAF uniform as a commissioned officer of the RAAF Meteorological Service. He then saw service as a forecaster with the RAAF at Mount Gambier.

With the expansion of the Instrument Section, Bill was placed in charge of a workshop and laboratory in Shepherd House in Melbourne in 1944–45. He had the rank of flight lieutenant and a staff of RAAF instrument makers and technicians.

People in Bright Sparcs - Ashton, Henry Tamblyn (Harry); Brann, Harold Walter Allen Neale (Bill); Cornish, Allan William; de la Lande, Ralph; Stout, Reginald William (Reg); 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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