Tidbinbilla Opening

19th March 1965


 

See also Opening Ceremony audio.

Tidbinbilla opening

Tidbinbilla on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

View from the water tank hill.

Note the marquees at right, opposite the Operations Building, which have been set up for refreshments after the ceremony.

Panorama assembled by Colin Mackellar from Department of Supply movie film.


Tidbinbilla opening

Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies arrives.
Frame from movie film.


Tidbinbilla opening

Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies arrives.
Frame from movie film.


Tidbinbilla opening

The invited guests.
Assembled from movie frames.


Tidbinbilla opening

View of the dias and official seating.
The 85 foot (26 metre) antenna is to the right, on the other side of the Ops Building.


1965 Tid opening booklet

This booklet was produced by WRE for the Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

4.6MB PDF file. Booklet preserved and scanned by Harold Frodsham.

(Also on the Booklets page.)

 

Minister for Supply Allen Fairhall writes this in the Preface (of the booklet above):

“This is another day of achievement for the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration in its great scientific attack on the mysteries of space and for Australia whose area of cooperation in the great adventure continues to expand.

I offer you a warm welcome to Deep Space Instrumentation Facility No. 42 which today officially joins the world deep-space network and which, with two more stations yet to be built, will scan the limitless reaches of space from the Australian Capital Territory.

It is altogether fitting that these stations should operate from this nation’s capital, for the conduct of these stations in Australia by Australians illustrates the growing association between Australia and the United States in the field of scientific endeavour.

But the exercise encourages still wider development of international cooperation and understanding. I recall a few months ago we had the pleasure of welcoming to Australia members of the United States House of Representatives Committee on Science and Astronautics who expressed themselves as being well pleased with the installation and the standard of conduct of their stations at Woomera, Carnarvon and here in Canberra.

So the programme goes with two-way benefits: to the United States in access to our geography peculiarly essential to their peaceful scientific endeavours in space and to Australia in access to the most advanced technology in space research and related activities.

The Department of Supply is proud to carry the responsibility for the efficient management of this new and important installation but, as a matter of policy, we believe that the scientific benefits and the experience of operating in the most sophisticated ele ctronics field in the world offers great opportunities to Australian industry.

We are therefore happy to acknowledge a consortium of private enterprise companies under the name SpaceTrack Pty. Limited as the successful tenderers for the operation of this Tidbinbilla Space Tracking Station. Thus, to the value of Government-to-Government cooperation, there is added, for Australia, the benefit of Government-to-Industry association.

May all who are associated in any way with D.S.I.F. 42 derive great satisfaction from this effort to expand the frontiers of human knowledge.”



Tidbinbilla opening

Sir Robert Menzies and NASA Associate Administrator Edmond C Buckley (who is apparently holding the sheet which had been covering the model of the antenna) on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

Photo preserved by Mike Dinn, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

Sir Robert Menzies and NASA Associate Administrator Edmond C Buckley.

Photo preserved by Mike Dinn, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

Australian Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies speaks on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

Photo preserved by Mike Dinn, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

Sir Robert Menzies and Australian Minister for Supply, Allen Fairhall, after the unveilling of the plaque on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

Photo preserved by Mike Dinn, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

Sir Robert Menzies and Australian Minister for Supply, Allen Fairhall, after the unveilling of the plaque on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

Station Director Bob Leslie is visible behind Mr Fairhall.

Large, Larger.

Photo preserved by Stew Burton, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

The plaque.
Frame from movie film.


PM Menzies with Bob Leslie

Inside the Ops Area, Australian Minister for Supply, Mr (later Sir) Allen Fairhall (left) and Australian Prime Minister, Sir Robert Menzies (centre) are guided by Station Director Bob Leslie (right).

Photo preserved by Clive Jones, passed on by John Heath,
scanned by Mike Dinn.


Tidbinbilla opening

Australian Minister for Supply, Allen Fairhall (left) and Australian Prime Minister Sir Robert Menzies walk from the Ops Building to the antenna.

Photo preserved by Mike Dinn, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

Australian Minister for Supply, Allen Fairhall walks with Australian Prime Minister, Robert Menzies from the Mess Building (now the Visitor’s Centre) on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

The Operations Building and 85 foot antenna are in the distance.

Large, Larger.

Photo preserved by Stew Burton, scan by Colin Mackellar.


Tidbinbilla opening

Australian Minister for Supply, Allen Fairhall walks with Australian Prime Minister, Robert Menzies from the Mess Building (now the Visitor’s Centre) on Opening Day, 19th March 1965.

The Operations Building and 85 foot antenna are in the distance.

Photo from Clive Jones via Mike Dinn, scan by Colin Mackellar.

 

Visitors’ Book

Photos of the Visitors Book for the day of the opening ceremony to come here.

 

* Department of Supply movie film – preserved and HD transfer by The National Archives of Australia.
Thanks to Brian Larwood for obtaining the copy.
Screenshots selected by Colin Mackellar.