Tom Reid MBE

Honeysuckle Creek Station Director


DR Stuart Ross Taylor

Tom Reid after Apollo 11.

Adapted from Hamish Lindsay’s post-Apollo 11 team photo.


On 30 May 1994, Hamish Lindsay recorded this interview with Thomas Reid at his home in Canberra.

Tom had served as Senior Scientific Officer Range E and Red Lake, Woomera, then as Station Director at Orroral Valley (STADAN), Honeysuckle Creek (MSFN) and Tidbinbilla (DSN).

Tom Reid

audio Interviewed by Hamish Lindsay (41 minutes, 14.7MB mp3 file)

Some highlights:

00:30 RAN, Dept of Supply, Woomera, Red Lake.
03:05 Orroral Valley, then Honeysuckle Creek.
05:50 The Wing.
06:20 Department of Supply. The “Australian Contribution”.
08:10 First missions.
09:00 Goddard Simulation team. George Harris.
11:06 Operational phase. Apollo 11, Ops console.
13:35 July 21 1969. Tec. Roberts at Goddard.
15:30 DSS42 transmitter problems, Prime Minister Gorton.
17:50 Contingencies which led to HSK relaying the First Step.
[Subsequent to this interview, the problems at Goldstone were determined to have come from incorrect scan-converter settings.]
21:00 Pleased it came through Honeysuckle. “A little goodie that I didn’t expect to get.”
22:20 Apollo 11 “a couple of dBs” up on Apollo 8.
22:55 Apollo 13 and the SpaceTrack team from Tidbinbilla.
25:50 Differences between the MSFN and DSN.
30:00 Honeysuckle and Orrroal closure. Lost opportunities.
33:00 Two highlights after Apollo 11 (Voyager and Viking).
34:40 DSS43, Apollo 17. Other organisations supporting.
37:20 Changes in the spacetracking industry in Australia. The need for contractors. Public service unable to work as quickly.



Interview recorded by Hamish Lindsay, 30 May 1994.
DAT tape transferred, lightly edited and encoded by Colin Mackellar, September 2020.