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Biographical entry Brann, Harold Walter Allan Neall (Bill) (1911 - 1995)

Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
18 February 1995
Alternative Names
  • Brann, Bill


Bill Brann was the Head of the Instrument Section at the Bureau of Meteorology from 1948-1969, and Superintending Meteorologist Observations and Traffic from 1970-1976.


BSc (majors chemistry, physics, pure mathematics), University of Melbourne. Science master Ballarat High School. Joined the Bureau of Meteorology in 1940. After training as a meteorologist served as a forecaster at Western Junction, Essendon and Sydney. Commissioned into the RAAF Meteorological Service in Sydney in 1941. Meteorologist RAAF, 1941-1946, in the Sydney area, at Mt Gambier and, from 1944, Instruments Section Head Office. Officer in Charge Instruments Section 1948-1970. (Managed the specification, purchase, testing, calibration, installation and maintenance of all observing equipment used by the Bureau of Meteorology. Position first classified as Meteorologist Grade 3 then Supervising Meteorologist and finally Superintending Meteorologist.) Superintending Meteorologist Observations and Traffic, 1969-1976. Overseas mission to the United Kingdom and the United States of America investigating the latest developments in meteorological observing systems, 1957. Member of the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) Commission for Instruments and Observations and represented Australia at meetings of that Commission. Went to Africa in 1969 as WMO expert on the development of hydrometeorological observing systems.

After his retirement Bill worked at the University of Melbourne and the RAAF Academy Point Cook on the development of acoustic sounders. Bill was both the architect and builder of the observing system of the Bureau of Meteorology in the twenty five years following the end of the Second World War. He set the highest standards for himself and expected no less from his staff. He was highly respected by his colleagues and his former staff, many of whom, when recalling their own careers, say, with affection and pride, 'I once worked for the legendary Bill Brann' (Don Handcock, 1995)

He was a most dedicated man. He had the presence of a headmaster...I was so pleased he took me under his wing. Reg Stout, Metarch Papers No.8, 1996.


Career position - Joined the Bureau of Meteorology
1941 - 1946
Career position - Commissioned into the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) Meteorological Service in Sydney
1944 - 1948
Career position - Meteorologist at the RAAF Meteorological Service in Mt Gambier
1948 - 1970
Career position - Officer in Charge of Instruments Section RAAF Meteorological Service
Career position - Overseas mission to the United Kingdom and the United States of America
1969 - 1976
Career position - Superintending Meteorologist at Observations and Traffic

Published resources


See also

Helen Morgan