ZILLMERE UNDERGROUND OPERATIONS ROOM
W/T REMOTE RECEIVING BUILDING,
NEAR BEAMS ROAD, FITZGIBBON,
BRISBANE, QLD

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The Zillmere bunker was located just off Beams Road at Fitzgibbon, QLD 4018. It was originally roughly located in the area of 'U.B.D., Brisbane 1998, Street Directory', page 109, grid reference R17 and page 110, grid reference A17/B17. In April 2001, part of the original property still had a number of very faded Commonwealth Government signs along its front alignment onto Beams Road. It was approximately opposite today's Golden Downs Mobile Home Village on Beams Road. The WAAAF's who worked there referred to the location as Cabbage Tree Creek.

 

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Zillmere Underground Operations Room

 

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Zillmere W/T Remote Receiving Building

 

It is my belief that the bunker would have been roughly in the general location between the very small playground located at the eastern end of Carselgrove Avenue and Acacia Close, Map Reference R16 on Map 109 UBD. Alas, another piece of Australia's wartime heritage appears to have disappeared.

 

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Playground located at the eastern end of
Carselgrove Avenue

 

It is interesting to note that the Drawing No for the Zillmere Remote Receiving building is the same Drawing No. as the Bankstown Remote Receiving building (not to be confused with the Bankstown Fighter Sector HQ). Drawing No. 41/42/2508.

 

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Commonwealth of Australia signs along Beams Road

 

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Not much to see on the property
This is about as interesting as it gets!!

 

Adamas Jorgensen used to live in the area many years ago and remembers the following about the Zillmere Bunker:-

1/...The roadway was 'wide-enough' to 'accommodate' large military vehicles in single-file. There were no passing-points that I remember.

2/...Either the roadway was 'lightly' utilised or well-mantained as there was no pot-holing or rutting. BEAMS ROAD was of a lower 'standard' of construction and material, regardless of the volume of traffic.

3/...The roadway material was, what looked like, crushed pink granite, as opposed to BEAMS ROAD itself, which was an entirely different material, possibly clay/coarse gravel.

4/...There were no telegraph poles or evidence of telegraph poles on the 'property' other than those that 'surrounded' the bunker. I'll 'presume' that the reason for this was to 'conceal' the room's existence and that landlines may very well have been utilised to 'connect' communications to the 'outside' world.

5/...There were remnants of both rubber-coated (vulcanised?) and raw steel cables connected to or lying 'near' the telegraph poles. The cables were approximately one inch and, a half to three-quarters of an inch in diameter, respectively.

 

Marj Rippon (101322)
ACW Marj Boyling (nee Rippon) (101322) worked as an R/T Operator in 8 Fighter Sector Headquarters from about May 1943 through till about July 1944. During this period she spent 3 months as an R/T Operator at the Zillmere underground Operations Room at Beams Road. At the time she was on loan to RAAF Command. She was living at the Victoria Park barracks during her posting to the Zillmere bunker. 

Marj told me in April 2001 that there was a W/T section inside the bunker with disposition boards. There was a separate room with engines for emergency power. There was a hut some distance away in the trees where they would go to have their meals. This would often consist of some salmon, a loaf of bread, and a head of lettuce that they brought with them on the truck from Victoria Park barracks each day. Marj remembered that there was a tent where there was always a RAAF guard on duty. The RAAF would always have their own cook there and sometimes the WAAAF's would be invited over for a meal.

The W/T operator was in contact with all of the lookout stations along the coastline and they would plot the location of various aircraft, etc. There were three shifts a day with the following personnel on each shift:-

- WAAAF sergeant
- 2 or 3 other WAAAFs under the sergeant
- one R/T Operator

Doris Ries (101003)
Doris McDonald (nee Ries) also worked at this bunker for a while during WW2. They used to do tuning work she told me.

 


 

Cliff Hodgson contacted me on 4 March 2014 and advised that in 1982-84 he was still in the Army and was posted as the transport supervisor (RACT) to 1MP Coy at Indooroopilly and had to conduct motorcycle training to licence standard for both 1 & 9 MP Coy.  Cliff would use this area as a kindergarten Safe area in the first week or so of each course. Cliff said the area offered everything that was needed for learners.

 


 

National Archives Australia Records:-

Title: Zillmere Qld - Remote Receiving Station - Acquisition of site
Series number: A705
Control symbol: 171/94/70
Contents date range: 1942 - 1951
Access status: Not yet examined
Location: National Office
Barcode no: 329817

Title: Zillmere - RAAF W/T remote receiving station - Acquisition
Series number: J56
Control symbol: QL996
Contents date range: 1942 - 1960
Access status: Open
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 1383742

Title: Zillmere - RAAF W/T remote receiving station
Series number: J56
Control symbol: QL996 PART 2
Contents date range: 1950 - 1987
Access status: Open with exception
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 1383745

Title: Zillmere - Commonwealth land required by state railways
Series number: J56
Control symbol: QL996/2
Contents date range: 1950 - 1978
Access status: Open with exception
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 1383748

Title: Zillmere 3 Temp Buildings [Zillmere RAAF Remote Receiving Station]
Series number: BP243/1
Control symbol: KS 193
Contents date range: 1942 - 1946
Access status: Open
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 424683

Title: Zillmere - RAAF W/T remote receiving station - Acquisition
Series number: J56
Control symbol: QL996 PART 1A
Contents date range: 1942 - 1951
Access status: Open
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 1383744

Title: DWB [Director of Works and Buildings] - Property - Zillmere Qld - Remote Receiving Station - Hiring of site
Series number: A705
Control symbol: 171/93/195
Contents date range: 1942 - 1949
Access status: Not yet examined
Location: National Office
Barcode no: 3293024

Title: Zillmere - Remote receiving station - Disposal
Series number: J56
Control symbol: QL996/1
Contents date range: 1949 - 1965
Access status: Open
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 1383747

Title:  Zillmere - Remote receiving station - Disposal approximately 77 acres
Series number: J56
Control symbol: QL996/3
Contents date range: 1959 - 1965

Access status: Open
Location: Queensland
Barcode no: 1383750

 

Has anyone had a look at any of the above documents?

Can you send me a copy of any of them?

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank Cliff Hodgson, Chris Jamesson, Mark Walker, Adamas Jorgensen, Doris McDonald and Marj Boyling for their assistance with this home page.

 

Can anyone help me with more information?

 

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 Peter Dunn 2015

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This page first produced 14 April 2001

This page last updated 13 January 2017