Townsville @ War - Air Defence Systems 1942
and the three Air Raids on Townsville


No 4 Volunteer Air Observers Corps Centre was initially established in a room inside the Townsville Police Barracks.

P/O Burnett attended the Townsville "C.W.A. Younger Set" meeting to enlist volunteers to man the Air Flash phones in No. 4 VAOC Centre. Reports flashed by VAOC Observers were plotted at 4 VAOC & passed on to 3 Fighter Sector Headquarters at the Townsville Grammar School at North Ward.

In February 1942, various RAAF officers travelled far and wide to set up numerous Observation Posts. The following is an example of some of the many travels by these RAAF officers:-


5 Feb 42, P/O Westmore & P/O Robinson travelled south by Railway Quadra cycle & located volunteers to establish Observation Posts (OPs) between Townsville & Mackay

7 Feb 42, F/Lt Wollett & P/O Raine travelled north by car to establish similar OPs between Townsville and Port Douglas

8 Feb 42, P/O Campbell travelled west from Townsville to Charters Towers establish OPs

24 Feb 42 F/O Falkiner travelled by train to establish OPs at Mount Isa

26 Feb 42, P/O Westmore travelled by car to establish OPs in a ring around Townsville

26 Feb 42, P/O Robinson & P/O Campbell established an OP at Cape Pallarenda.


No. 4 VAOC Centre moved to 18 Stuart St, North Ward on 15 April 1942.


On 30 April 1943 VAOC Posts were as per the Tables below:-


OP = There were many Observation Posts (OP) that were manned on a 24 hour basis.

ARO = Air Reporting Officers were purely voluntary positions, who made reports when aircraft sightings were noticed.

RP = Reporting Post - these were manned on a basis of 16 hours a day.

NOTE:- In an emergency period endeavours were made to man ARO's and RP's on a 24 hrs a day basis.




Line and RT to Townsville. RT only to Cairns

CH 1 Tobermorey Anderson W G R/T RP
DC 1 Wensley Barnes E J 11N Nelia ARO
DD 1 Barabon O'Neill P C 4 ARO
DD 2 Moselle      
DE 2 Marathon Kearney T W PT RP
DE 3 Stamford Hay J H PT ARO
DE 4 Hughenden McLean G O 53 RP
EA 2 Prairie McGregor W D 49 RP
KQ 3 Borroloola Heathcock Comet J R/T (8XB)  
VR 1 Cheviot Hills Murphy A L Connected to R/T (8GI)) RP
VS 1 Lyndhurst Shaw L R 2S Mt Surprise RP
VS 2 Wandovale Young J W 28H RP
VS 4 Gregory Springs Murphy J V E Via 8GI ARO
VS 5 Blackbraes Nimmo? Mts? J L R/T (8GI) ARO
VS 6 Reedy Springs Anning R 2H Pentland ARO
VX 2 Mt.Emu Plains Wickbold F C 2N Pentland ARO
VX 3 Wongalee Thompson A M 21? Hughenden ARO
VX 4 Torrens Creek OIC Police 11 ARO
VX 5 Clark Hills Anning C C R/T (8GO) ARO
WP 1 Brunette Downs Salter E F R/T (VJX) RP
XH 1 Corinda Burns Mrs R A R/T (8XN) RP
XJ 1 Almora Downs Colless G R/T (VHU5) RP
XO 1 Lawn Hill Sammon J D R/T (8 GY) RP
XO 2 Riversleigh Irwin Mrs V A R/T (8YT) ARO
XS 1 Camooweal OIC AMF   OP
XT 1 Morstone Downs Cameron V C 9 C'weal ARO
XX 1 Avon Downs Spratt J M 1 C'weal RP
XY 1 Barclay Downs Whiting E J R/T (8UL) RP
ZF 1 Augustus Downs Kyle-Little R R/T (8XF) RP
ZL 1 Lorraine Schultz Miss L R/T (8XG) RP
ZM 1 Donors Hill McDougall E PT RP
ZM 2 Donors Hill Sta Vidler H N PT RP
ZN 1 Iffley Campbell S R/T (8XZ) ARO
ZN 2 Claraville Willcox J T R/T (8YM) ARO
ZO 1 Esmeralda Vicary F R R/T (8YO) ARO
ZQ 1 Coolullah Pringle E B 3 Kajabbi ARO
ZQ 2 Kamilaroi Baker E 2 Boomarra RP
ZR 1 Wurung Taylor R S 1S Donors Hill ARO
ZR 3 Boomarra Hall Mrs L M PT RP
ZR 4 Dobbyn Clarke D G PT RP
ZR 6 Canobie Taylor R S 1S Donors Hill RP
ZS 2 Millungera Crossley E M 12B Julia Creek RP
ZS 3 Arizona Lenahan T E R/T ARO
ZV 2 Mt. Isa     OP
ZV 3 Calton Hills Power A J R/T (8GQ) ARO
ZW 1 Granada Frazer A J P/T ARO
ZW 2 Clonagh White J F 6S Cloncurry RP
ZW 3 Cloncurry Kerr V L 81 OP
ZW 4 Byrimine Magoffin J 44 ARO
ZX 1 Crofels? Sharp M PT ARO
ZX 2 Dalgonally Affleck A J 9D Julia Creek RP
ZX 3 Corindi Kennedy E PT ARO
ZX 4 Gilliat Brooks J M PT RP
ZX 5 Consentes Doubleday E H 21D ARO
ZX 6 Julia Creek Taylor W 24 OP
ZX 7 Lara Glasson W H 21A Julia Creek RP
ZY 2 Maxwelton Gates J PT RP
ZY 4 Nelia Howatson J B PT RP
ZY 5 Nonda Casey V J PT RP
ZZ 1 Richmond Anthonys Lagoon Clark H J 47 RP

PT = Public Telephone            OP = Observation Post (24 hrs watch)

RP = Reporting Post                ARO = Air Reporting Officer



AJ 5 Dallachy Webster Mrs E PT ARO
AJ 6 Kennedy Doyle H L Carruchan 11 RP
AJ 8 Kirrana Kelly D T Carruchan 4 RP
AK 4 Cardwell NCO i/c Cardwell 4 OP
AK 5 Lower Tully Butler Mrs J PT ARO
AO 2 Stoneleigh Alston F N Upper Stone 7 RP
AO 3 Mt Fox Simpson Mrs E A PT RP
AO 4 Camel Creek Atkinson Mrs P J Mt Fox 2U RP
AO 5 Kangaroo Hills Allingham Mrs V Mt Fox 2D RP
AO 7 Ewah Alexander Miss A PT ARO
AP 1 Lucinda Point Howell A A 4 OP
AP 2 Ingham Mulvey J J 5 OP
AP 3 Bambaroo Hanson Mrs L M 3B RP
AP 4 Rollingstone      
AP 5 Palm Island NCO i/c Teleradion OP
AP 6 Trebonne Britton Mrs D L PT ARO
AP 7 Morleys Morley H E Halifax 39 RP
AP 8 Mutarnee Brush Miss N PT ARO
AP 10 Toobanna Finlayson Mrs M PT ARO
AP 11 Bemerside McGrath D Halifax 76 or PT RP
AQ 1 Cape Cleveland Smith W E 46OD Townsville OP
AQ 2 Giru Mullins J L 2 & 3 RP
AQ 3 Cox's Cox W L 82 Ayr ARO
AQ 4 Pioneer Mill Ashwell G R 31 Brandon OP
AQ 5 Ayr Carloss E W 353 Ayr OP
AQ 6 Rita Island Sumner C L PT RP
AQ 11 Broadcast Sta 4QN Browne R J 1451 Townsville RP
AQ 12 The Rock Hollingsworth A D 322H Ayr ARO
AQ 13 Alva NCO i/c 397 Ayr OP
AT 2 Niall Garcer F 28N Charters Towers ARO
AT 3 Maryvale Clarke E 28S ARO
AT 4 Hillgrove Allingham J PT ARO
AT 5 Bluff Downs Hughes E L 28U Charters Towers RP
AT 7 Fletchervale Dunn M 28D RP
AT 6 Nulla Nulla Hastie C D 28U C. Towers ARO
AU 1 Argea Phillips G A PT RP
AU 3 Star Kilpatrick Mrs E 18U Ch Towers ARO
AU 4 Toonpan Mrs Moses PT RP
AU 5 Dotswood McConachy J 18Y Ch Towers RP
AU 6 Woodtsock Neville J 4 RP
AU 8 Burdekin Downs Salmon T 18D Ch Towers ARO
AU 9 Reid River Meikle R PT Reid River RPO
AU 10 Mingela Sugars H PT Mingela RP
AU 11 Castle Hill     OP
AX 1 Cargoon Anning Miss E 2S Pentland ARO
AY 1 Toomba McKinnon H 28U Ch Towers ARO
AY 2 Cornelya Anning S E   ARO
AY 3 Ralees Creek Hind W H PT RP
AY 4 Homestead Rollison Miss D 21 Homestead ARO
AY 5 Pentland Johnstone J W PT Pentland RP
AY 6 Helenslee Foster J D Homestead 4 ARO
AZ 2 Charters Towers Parsons G 134 ARO



DB 1 McDermotts McDermott P J R9D Calen RP
DB 2 Catru Tappenden Mrs M A PT RP
DB 3 Mt Ossa Nitz C V 7 ARO
DB 4 Springcliffe NCO i/c 2 OP
DB 5 Calen Hann Mrs S PT ARP
DB 6   NCO i/c   OP
DB 7   NCO i/c 13 OP
DB 8 Mackay Hopkins F G 702 & 90 OP
DB 9   Kennedy J M 8 ARO
DB 11 Finch Hatton Cooper Mrs H E? PT ARO
DB 12 Dalrymple Hts Sprogoe K 11 ARO
DB 16 Mt Spencer Mohr Mrs D PT ARO
DB 13   Thatcher C J 204 & 26 RP
DB 17 The Range Symonds Mrs P 13 Eton ARO
DB 19 Camerons Pkt Brothwell Mrs E B 3B ARO
DC 1 Natal Downs McVicar A A R/T (8VQ) ARO
DD 1 Yacamunda Warren N S PT ARO
DD 2 Mt Coolon Bridson C H PT ARO
DD 3 Mt McConnell Ball J F 2 ARO
DG 1 Nebo Hey F J 13 RP
DQ 7 Home Hill Hollywood J 41 & 11 OP
DQ 8 Inkerman MacDonald Miss A G PT RP
DQ 9 Gumlu Norman? J D PT OP
DQ 10 Arkendieth Warren Mrs A A PT ARO
DR 1 Guthalungra Hickmott W J PT RP
DV 1 Ravenswood Weinheimer F J H PT RP
DV 2 Strathmore Sth Cunningham E 11D Collinsville RP
DW 1 Horseshoe Bay NCO i/c 123 Bowen OP
DW 2 Longford Creek Jochheim Mrs H E R PT ARO
DW 3 Binbee Court R W PT RP
DW 4 Collingville Singleton T E 23 RP
DW 5 Dittmer Moran Miss K PT ARO
DW 6 Bowen Rees W F 142 RP
DW 7 Merinda Smith D O PT ARO
DW 8 Wilmington Beak A E 2A Merinda RP
DX 1 Deauville NCO i/c 6 OP
DX 2 Proserpine Dobbins A J 4 & 5 RP
DX 3 Gunyarra Jackson W W 92 RP
DX 4 Noorlah Johnstone A W PT ARO
DX 5 Bloomsburry Aspey W E PT ARO
DX 7 Conway Baxter G E 18 ARO
DZ 3 Lornesleigh Bell G 2 Mt McConnell ARO
DZ 4 Kir? River Downey Mrs PT ARO


NOTE:- At that time (30 April 1943) these Posts came into Townsville Control direct, but within a couple of weeks they would report to Mackay Control.



ZK 1 Abington Downs Edwards C P R/T ARO
FC 1 Aurukun Mission McKenzie Mr R/T RP
ZF 2 Burketown May J R/T OP
AO 1 Banks Island Torres Strait Signal Corps R/T OP
GG 1 Cape Sidmouth   R/T OP
VN 5 Carpentaria Downs McNamara P B 2 RP
VT 1 Clarke River Barker A PT RP
PK 1 Coen RAAF (Coen)   OP
VN 2 Conjuboy Wilson A D (Mrs) 2D Old Wyandotte RP
ZJ 2 Croydon Reese G H 2 OP
ZP 2 Cumberland Williamson Mr   RP
VG 1 Dagworth Lyons F P R/T RP
UJ 3 Darnley Island Torres Strait Sig Corp R/T OP
ZC 1 Delta Downs Pointon S (Mrs) R/T RP
FY 1 Dunbar Sister Roberts R/T (8GF) RP
  Doomadgee Read H R R/T (8GF) RP
  Daru Island      
FN 1 Edward River Mission Chapman R/T ARO
VM 2 Einasleigh Ray H J P? & 3 RP
ZM 3 Forest Home Murray R H S P RP
VM 1 Forsayth Adams F S A P? RP
GM 2 Flinders Island VDC R/T  
FX 1 Galbraith Henry L R/T RP
ZK 6 Georgetown Weirman C P OP
ZK 2 Gilbert River Dornbusch M? M P? RP
ZH 3 Glenore Royes E C (Mrs) ??S RP
VO 6 Greenvale Atkinson J H ?T Wyandotte RP
ZP 1 Green Hills Smith J (Miss) C RP
ZL 1 Gregory Downs Schaffert P R?   RP
ZG 2 Inverleigh Chandler J K P? RP
FE 5 Iron Range RAAF L? OP
UM 1 Jervis Island Torres Strait Sig Corp R/T OP
ZB 1 Karumba Lieut Newman   OP
Ft 1 Koolatah   R/T RP
FE 6 Lockhart River   R/T ARO
ZG 4 Magoura Bartham R R/T RP
AY 1 Mapoon Mission Cane F A R/T ARO
VG 2 Meadowbank Hassall A C 152 Mt Garnett RP
ZG 5 Milgarra Boileau (Miss)   RP
ZD 1 Miranda Downs Campbell D 3D RP
FS 1 Mitchell River Mission MacLeod A J R/T ARO
VH 1 Mt Surprise Jamieson G   RP
FV 1 Mornington Island      
AO 2 Mulgrave island Torres Strait Sig Corp R/T RP
GN 1 Murdock Point      
VO 1 Murray Island Torres Strait Sig Corp R/T OP
GM 1 Musgrave   L/T RP
AY 2 Moreton     OP
ZH 1 Normanton Geyer G PT & 23 OP
VN 4 Old Wyandotte Atkinson H? D PT RP
FE 1 Portland Roads (1) Army L/T OP
FE 2 Portland Roads (2) Army L/T OP
FE 3 Portland Roads (3) Army L/T OP
FE 4 Portland Roads (4) Army L/T OP
ZK 4 Prestwood Green J M (Miss)   RP
GG 2 Port Stewart      
VN 1 Rosella Plains Collins T B 2N Mt Surprise RP
UG 1 Sai Bai Island Torres Strait Signal Corps R/T OP
VN 3 Spring Creek Collins S J 2D Mt Surprise RP
ZJ 1 Strathmore Nth Evans G   RP
VH 3 St Ronans Davis G 9U ARO
AO 1 Thursday Island Weeks M L (Mr) R/T OP
AU 1 Turtle Head Island   R/T OP
VN 6 Valley of Lagoons Woodhouse 3D Old Wyandotte RP
VO 1 Wairuna Atkinson K J 2K Mt Fox RP
ZF 3 Wernadinga Roberts K R (Mrs)   RP
FD 1 Weipa Mission   R/T ARO
Woolagorang To be established      
Yarrun To be established      
York Island To be established      


BC 2 Chillagoe McDonough W P 9 RP
BC 3 Almaden Mackey J W PT ARO
BC 5 Mt Mulligan Skelly L Y 4 RP
BC 6 Wolfram Tudehope Mrs M A PT ARO
BC 8 Mungana O'Brien W PT ARO
BH 2 Mt Garnett Barton T H 11D RP
BJ 11 Gunnawarra Atkinson Mrs C 15S RP
BJ 12 Glenruth Atkinson R L 15G ARO
BX 1 Curraghmore Roberts Mrs G A 6H ARO
BX 2 Mt Carbine Roberts Mrs K E 6D RP
BY 1 Daintree Young J R 7 RP
BY 3 Mossman Morgan A J 8 OP
BY 4 Port Douglas NCO i/c 19 OP
BY 6 Mt Molloy De Tournouer J E 14 RP
BY 8 Snapper Island NCO i/c R/T OP


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This page first produced 8 July 2014

This page last updated 25 February 2020