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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

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
My Springboard
Proposal for More Staff
Efforts to Improve Scientific Status of the Bureau
Gibbs-Priestley-White Prospectus
Successes and Struggles with Ministers and Permanent Heads
Submission to Royal Commission on Government Administration
The Committee of Inquiry
Achievements 1962 to 1978

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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Chapter 6: A Springboard for the Future

Between 1939 and 1962 Norman Warren, Edward Timcke, and Len Dwyer, with the support of Bureau staff in Central Office, Divisional Offices and field offices, were responsible for the development of what had been a small and somewhat insignificant Government agency in the late 1930s into a national meteorological service which at the time of Len's death had the respect of politicians, Government authorities, people engaged in primary and secondary industry and commercial activities and the general public. The international respect for the Bureau was also a testimony to the work of the staff of the Bureau in the Warren, Timcke and Dwyer years.

The academic qualifications, meteorological experience and maturity of Bureau staff was diverse. Many had been in the Australian Army, Navy or Air Force during World War II (some having also served in World War I). During their meteorological careers most had been located at a variety of Bureau offices in Australia, some in remote locations where self-reliance and adaptability were the essential qualities needed. These circumstances produced a special breed of self-sufficient, resourceful and independent individuals.

The general community had gradually become aware that meteorological services provided by the Bureau could be particularly valuable especially when life and property were threatened by tropical cyclones, floods, bushfires and other potentially dangerous meteorological phenomena. With the advent of television, the broadcast of weather information by that medium, and by ABC and commercial radio, stimulated a special interest in what had long been a popular subject of general conversation.

Following Warren's keen interest in international aspects of meteorology, Timcke and Dwyer maintained a prominent profile in that arena. Warren and Dwyer made significant contributions to the creation and development of WMO which became one of the most progressive of the specialised agencies of the United Nations Organization.

The achievement of this remarkable national and international development of Australian meteorology depended on the willingness of the Commonwealth Government to provide the resources for the Bureau to use the spectacular technological and scientific advances which occurred during this period.

People in Bright Sparcs - Dwyer, Leonard Joseph; 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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