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Table of Contents

Memories of the Bureau, 1946 to 1962





Chapter 1: The Warren Years, 1946 to 1950

Chapter 2: International Meteorology

Chapter 3: The Timcke Years, 1950 to 1955
A Period of Consolidation
Aviation Services
Services for the General Public
Rockets and Atomic Weapons
Instruments and Observations
Climate and Statistics
International Activities
Central Analysis and Development
The Universities
The Meteorology Act
Achievements of the Timcke Years

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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Harry Ashton continued in charge of the Training School which had been responsible for a heavy program of classes for forecasters and observers. Included in these classes were trainees from India, Pakistan, Singapore and other South-east Asian countries. Harry and his wife Melva and other members of the Training School such as Kevin Lomas made friends with these trainees, ensuring they settled down in their new surroundings. Many of these friendships endured after the students returned home.

Harry's term with the Training School was interrupted by my absence at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in 1951–52 during which he acted as Supervising Meteorologist (Research) and by Harry's involvement in supplying meteorological service for the AWRE tests of nuclear weapons. During this period John Lillywhite acted as OIC Training and Publications Section and when Harry became Supervising Meteorologist (Climatology), John continued in charge of training.

A fine crop of cadet meteorologists were students in the Training School in the early 1950s. They included Clifford, Handcock, Rainbird, Spillane and Streten, all of whom made significant contributions to the development of the Bureau, some only retiring in recent years. As cadet meteorologists they gained experience in the Bureau during their university years and it was this early experience which was important in providing a very special grounding for these young men. With the retirement of Tommy Camm in 1953 John Lillywhite was appointed Deputy Director in the Victorian Divisional Office and Neil McRae took over the responsibility as OIC Training.

Bruce Kell and Geoff Tyler were two especially interesting post-war trainees who joined the Analysis Section. As a very young recruit in the Australian Army Bruce spent some time in a Japanese prisoner-of-war camp. During their training they had decided that they could make their fortunes by gambling on horse races. I do not know how well they fared but know that Bruce had a wealthy father and would not have been concerned if their system was not successful. They were both very bright and their work was of a high standard which suggests that their training had been effective.

People in Bright Sparcs - Ashton, Henry Tamblyn (Harry); Handcock, Don; Lillywhite, John Wilson; Lomas, K. C. (Kev); McRae, John Neil; Spillane, Kevin Thomas; Streten, Neil Anthony; Timcke, Edward Waldemar; 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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