Model Air Raid Warden Training Buildings - town hall tower

Accession Number REL/12577.009
Collection type Technology
Object type Model
Physical description Paint, Wood
Maker Read, William Henry
Place made Australia: New South Wales, Sydney
Date made 1942-1943
Conflict Second World War, 1939-1945

Wooden model of a town hall tower, painted red and constructed from four sections in a stepped manner. Painted onto each side of the two top sections are long rectangular windows in white with a black outline. The second storey has three windows in a rectangular design, and a two bar window of the same design. The bottom section of the tower has two windows, one with three bars and one with five. One side of the tower has glued to it some short splintered wooden lengths which indicate that the remainder of the building is missing.

History / Summary

Collection of twelve (12) painted wooden and metal buildings representing houses, churches and civic buildings, some with bomb damage. They are meant to represent the section of the northern Sydney suburb of Wahroonga for which Dr William Read was the responsible warden and were regularly used for weekly Air Raid Precaution (ARP) training and large scale exercise planning sessions at his home at Cleveland St, Wahroonga. A keen carpenter, Dr Read created the buildings and originally based them on a board, painted to represent the streets in his suburb, and his daughter states "He used these to play 'war games' with his fellow wardens and had them set up on the verandah of his home." Dr Read had served in Egypt at No 2 General Hospital with the Australian Army Medical Corps (AAMC) during the First World War, to the extent of moving his wife and three children to Cairo to be close to him. Upon his return to Australia, he ran the Hospital at Georges Heights which had been set up to receive the Gallipoli wounded.