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No. 9 FSHQ was formed at Cairns on 9 Oct 1942. Fifty personnel of No. 9 Mobile Fighter Sector arrived in Cairns and took possession of the Temperance Hall in Cairns for their Operations Building. This was Haughton Hall, Progress Association, Mayers Street, Edge Hill. They also occupied vacant land owned by Mr. Flemming bounded by Mayer and Pease Streets opposite the Progress Association Hall. Bush type latrines were erected. There were no vacant houses at Edgehill so personnel were sleeping in MRC Type prefabricated huts.

Approval was given for partitioning to be installed in the Progress Hall along with other alterations at an estimated total cost of 950 Pounds. The nearby Camp had one ablution block with 7 showers, one 7 hole latrine, one mess and kitchen for Airmen and 100 M.R.C. type prefabricated huts without floors. It was reported in a latter to the Director of Works & Buildings on 6 July 1943 that none of the buildings were complete. They were constructed of plywood and were unpainted. The ablutions had not been roofed and as a result the walling had badly deteriorated.

9 FSHQ embarked Cairns on 8 Feb 1943 and disembarked at Milne Bay on 13 Feb 1943. The Progress Hall was then used by 33 Zone Filter Centre of 25 Operational Base Unit (25OBU). To provide a Zone Filter Centre Camp for 4 officers and 95 other ranks, only 34 of the 100 huts were required, with the remainder handed over to N.E.A. Equipment for distribution.

Board Paper No. 304 approved the use of WAAAF personnel in the Cairns area. They were to be used in 25 Operational Base Unit, 33 Zone Filter Centre and No. 76 Wing Headquarters. Earlier correspondence had also mentioned their use for the Cairns Key Communication Centre. They were all to be accommodated in 33 Zone Filter Centre Camp. The establishments for the WAAAFs was as follows:-


WAAAF Personnel Officers Sergeants Other Ranks
25 Operational Base Unit 5 5 89
33 Zone Filter Centre 6 5 75
TOTAL WAAAF 11 10 164


RAAF Personnel Officers Sergeants Other Ranks
33 Zone Filter Centre 6 3 46


9 FSHQ moved to Goodenough on 26 Sep 1943 and then moved to Dobodura on 23 Mar 1944. They relocated again to Madang on 31 Dec 1944. The unit was disbanded in Madang on 21 Jan 1945


A typical RAAF Fighter Sector Headquarters


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This page first produced 14 April 2001

This page last updated 13 January 2020