Melbourne Approach - 1947

Approach Controller Ken Dalziel in the Approach Control soundproof office at Melbourne/Essendon aerodrome in 1947. This was located in the old aero-club building beneath the Control Tower.

Aircraft were taken over from Area (En Route) Control about 60-70 NM from the airport and maintained until handed off to the Tower Controller, usually about 10 NM out. In this era, the Tower exercised visual control only. The Approach Controller decided the landing sequence and held aircraft in a 'stack' if bad weather or traffic density required.

The Approach controller had VHF and HF radio, physically located with him in the room. On the desk is a radar plotting chart and a direct telephone to the radar hut. At this time, the radar was a wartime Light Weight Air Warning (LW/AW) set being used experimentally. Note the instrument approach chart on the wall in the background.

The checquered sports jacket was the unofficial uniform of ATC for many years.

(Photo: CAHS collection)

Click here to see the Rodoniscope in use by Area Control c.1946

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