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Federation and MeteorologyBureau of Meteorology
Table of Contents

Weather News


Fifty Years of Weather History
Weather Officers—25 Years Ago
The Perth RO Since 1929
Remember the Pioneers
Akeroyd the Great
Out with the Old—In with the New [Bill Gibbs / John Zillman]
Dr Bill Gibbs
Dr John Zillman
Meteorological History in the Territory
Edwin Thomas Quayle—Bureau Research Pioneer
Ninety Years Ago: Birth of the Bureau

Personal Notes



Observers and Volunteers




Contact us
No. 18 January 1958, Item 110 (continued)

In 1921, Mr. E. Kidson joined the Bureau and observations of upper winds by means of pilot balloons and theodolite observations were commenced by him. For a time double theodolite observations were made daily, in order to test the ascenting rate of the balloons, the base line for this purpose extending from the Weather Bureau to Government House. About this time, aviation from Pt. Cooke was developing and the first aviation forecasts commenced. They were compiled daily and telephoned to Point Cooke.

Because of destructive tropical cyclones on the Queensland Coast, public appeals were made for a meteorological station in the Coral Sea for the purpose of giving prior warning of cyclonic development and movement. So in October, 1921, Willis Island Meteorological Station was established, the first, field station of the Bureau, and it has continued to function to the present time. The first meteorological Observer then, and the man who had much to do with launching the project successfully was Captain J. K. Davis, then Director of Navigation.

In 1924 there was a major re-organisation of the Bureau by the newly created Public Service Board. Its main effects were to introduce a new classification of Meteorological Assistant, to combine the sectionalized climatological groups into one section and to introduce Machinists for processing the monthly rainfall and climatological returns. Three main sections on the technical side were established viz., Forecasting, Climatology, and Research and Aviation.

Wireless broadcasting commenced in 1924, 2FC Sydney being the first station to operate. This was followed soon by establishment of stations in all capital cities. Weather sessions were included in the broadcast programmes, and broadcasting proved a very effective means of disseminating rain and river information and forecasts to the public in city and country, and the practice soon developed of broadcasting Weather Bureau warnings of cold and hot spells, severe frosts and bush fire weather etc.

People in Bright Sparcs - Davis, John King; Kidson, Edward

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