NORMAN PARK CAMP
CAIRNS, FAR NORTH QUEENSLAND
IN AUSTRALIA DURING WWII

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Norman Park Camp was a hutted military camp during WWII bounded by Grafton, Minnie and Sheridan Streets in Cairns in far north Queensland.

 


NAA Plan

Norman Park Hutted Camp, Cairns. Note the US Naval Store at the far right.

 

Work began on the erection of a radio beacon in Norman Park in December 1940 for the safe navigation of aircraft approaching the Cairns Airfield. The structure was erected for the Commonwealth Department of the Interior at the southern end of Norman Park on one of the playing grounds. It was a 60 foot high wooden tower and a building which housed the radio transmitting equipment. Departmental officers had previously advised the Cairns City Council that Norman Park was the only suitable location for the radio range. No. 2 oval was no longer suitable for cricket games.

A huge crowd of Cairns residents and country visitors attended the sale in Norman Park on 18 and 19 December 1945 of Army amenities goods, formerly the property of military units in the area. There was keen interest in the lacquered cane chairs and an electric stove. Cafe and other business owners fored a large section of those in attendance.

On 14 January 1947 the Cairns Branch of the Queensland Fitness Council advised that the seven huts remaining in Norman Park had been purchased by the local branch for removal to Hartley's Creek where they formed the nucleus of the National Fitness Camp being established there.

The area is still a park today but it is now known as Munro Martin Parklands. The area was redeveloped and reopened in August 2016 as an entertainment area.

 

REFERENCE BOOKS

"Beacon in Norman Park", Cairns Post, Saturday 21 December 1940

"Amenities' Equipment Popular", Cairns Post, Thursday 20 December 1945

"National Fitness Huts", Cairns Post, Tuesday 14 January 1947

 

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This page first produced 4 January 2023

This page last updated 04 January 2023