7 AIRFRAME REPAIR DEPOT (7
ARD), ASCOT VALE, VIC
RENAMED 14 AIRCRAFT REPAIR DEPOT (14 ARD), GORRIE, NT
7 Airframe Repair Depot (7 ARD) was started at Ascot Vale in Victoria by Flight Lieutenant T.B. Philcox on 25 September 1942.
7 ARD was renamed to 14 Aircraft Repair Depot on 30 October 1942. By then it had a complement of only 4 officers and 7 airmen.
A Detachment of 14 ARD was established at Birdum in the Northern Territory by Flying Officer W.W. Lalor on 5 November 1942.
By the end of January 1943, 14 ARD had grown to 13 officers and 175 airmen. Squadron Leader F.W. Sexton inspected a proposed site for 14 ARD at Gorrie in the Northern Territory on 8 January 1943. On 8 February 1943, an advance party comprising Flight Lieutenant T.B. Philcox, plus 1 Officer and 71 airmen arrived at Gorrie airfield.
More groups travelled from Ascot Vale as follows:-
|Departed Ascot Vale|
|224 officers and men||8 March 1943|
|196 officers and men||30 March 1943|
|304 officers and men||11 April 1943|
|123 officers and men||27 Apr 1943|
|45 officers and men||14 May 1943|
By the end of May 1943, 14 ARD had a full complement of 959 officers and men.
The Aircraft Repair Depot was operational by June 1943, receiving its first aircraft, Spitfire (LZ848) on 25 July 1943. 14 ARD serviced all forms of aircraft from bombers to fighters, be they Australian RAAF, Navy, or the American Air Force. 14 ARD repaired airframes, hydraulics, landing gear, electrics, armaments, batteries, radio equipment and even made and bottled their required oxygen needs.
55 OBU was the administrative arm for 14 ARD.
I'd like to thank Bob Moffat for his assistance with this home page. Bob is an ex-RAAF wireless telegraphist who spent 15 months service at Birdum and Gorrie W/T Units.
"Units of the Royal Australian Air Force - A
Concise History, Volume 1, Introduction, Bases, Supporting Organisations"
compiled by RAAF Historical Section
© Peter Dunn 2006
This page first produced 26 April 2003
This page last updated 24 March 2013