3RD WATER TRANSPORT GROUP
CORPS OF ROYAL AUSTRALIAN ENGINEERS
IN AUSTRALIA DURING WW2

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visits since 29 December 2001

 

3RD WATER TRANSPORT GROUP
44 Officers
1,616 soldiers

Headquarters

13 Water Transport Operating Company 41st Landing Craft Company
(at Mount Martha)
5th Sea Ambulance Transport Company
16 Water Transport Operating Company 42nd Landing Craft Company
(at Trinity Beach)
51st Water Transport (Port Operations) Company
17 Water Transport Operating Company 43rd Landing Craft Company
(at Coochiemudlo Island)
52nd Water Transport (Port Operations) Company

 

When the 3rd Water Transport Group was formed in 1943, there were very few personnel recruited or trained in small craft or barge handling. This led to the establishment of a number of separate Water Transport Training Schools.

Water Transport (Small Craft) Training Centre Toorbul, on the northern shores of Moreton Bay. 
Water Transport (Small Craft) Training Centre Clifton Gardens, beside Taronga Park Zoo in Sydney
Water Transport (Landing Craft) Training Centre Victoria Point, Brisbane

The Victoria Point Training School operated for only a year and then it was merged in November 1944 with the Water Transport (Small Craft) Training Centre to form the First Water Transport Training Centre at Toorbul Point. Their Commanding Officer was Colonel A.S. "Gus" Gehrmann.

The functions of Water Transportation units such as the 43rd Landing Craft Company were:-

1.   The resupply of essential supplies from principal base ports to forward areas, where there were no roads yet where inshore sea transport was possible

2.   The carriage of troops, especially in amphibious assaults

3.   The evacuation of wounded.

4.   The local carriage of equipment, stores and salvage.

5.   Building of minor port facilities, such as jetties and landing stages, to facilitate the operation
      of inshore water craft.

 

REFERENCE BOOKS

"Watermen of War"
"A History of No. 43 Australian Water Transport Operating Company (Landing Craft) of the Royal Australian Engineers"
By Colonel John Pearn

 

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 Peter Dunn 2003

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This page first produced 29 December 2001

This page last updated 09 August 2004