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New Minesweepers at work

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’ Australia1 s new mine sweeping squadron has now "begun

regular training off the coast of New South Wales. ■

The 16th Minesweeping Squadron, comprising six "Ton"

Class minesweepers, arrived from Britain at the end of last year

The Minister for Defence and Acting Minister for the

Navy, Mr. Athol Townley, said today that the vessels had begun

operations after settling into the new minesweeping base,

H.M.A.S. WATERHEN, at Waverton on Sydney Harbour. .

The minesweepers will now undertake a comprehensive

programme of training to develop the essential team work on

the "sweepdeck".

Mr. Townley said that handling the variety of bulky

minesweeping equipment was one of the most rugged jobs in the

modern Navy. It demanded good basic seamanship and plenty of

co-ordinated team work.

Both Melbourne and Brisbane will see ships of the

minesweeping squadron during the next few months. Four of the

minesweepers will be in Melbourne from 12-15 April, and a .

similar number will visit Brisbane from 24-28 May.

The ships of the 16th Minesweeping Squadron are

H.M.A.S. HAWK, Senior ship (lieutenant B.G.J. Dunn) and CURLEW

(Lieutenant P.N. James), IBIS (Lieutenant R.G.O. Sataeri),

GULL (Lieutenant (S.D.) A.J. Hammill), SNIPE (Lieutenant

M.B, Rayment), and TEAL.(Lieutenant-Commander D.P. Hunt).


Canberra. ,14th March, ,1963.