19th Australian Infantry Training Battalion
From Our Contribution
Formed at Helwan in Egypt in September 1940, its staff were drawn from units of the 19th Infantry Brigade Group. The unit moved to the AIF's Middle East base at Beir Jirja in Palestine to train the reinforcements that were arriving from Australia. As the AIF expanded , HQ 6th Infantry Training Brigade was formed and the 19th Infantry Training Battalion moved with them to Julis in March 1941. The next month they moved to Kilo 89, and following the losses in Libya, Greece and Crete the pool of trained reinforcements allowed the front line units to be brought up to strength quickly. In August 1941 all the training units moved together at Nuseirat.
With the Japanese entry into the war, they left the Middle East in March 1942, arriving back in Adelaide where they camped at Nairne. In July the unit moved to Balcombe in Victoria, and later the same month they moved to Watsonia to join the 4th Australian Infantry brigade Group. In April 1942 they relocated to Dubbo in New South Wales to join the 1st Australian Infantry Brigade and from October 1943 when training was centralised at Cowra, so the 19th Australian Infantry Training Battalion focused on more advanced infantry training. In December 1943 the battalion moved to Cowra, and then in April 1945 to Bathurst where they joined the 16th Australian Infantry Training Brigade, remaining there until the conclusion of hostilities in August 1945 when they began training men for the Occupation Force for Japan.
- Cornielius Harold (Con) Kerrison 12 May - 7 Jun 1941
- James Percy Ray 31 Jan 22 Feb 1941
- Walter Leonard Axford 1 - 24 Jul 1941
- Walter James Holmes 17 Jun 1942 - 28 Feb 1943
- Arthur Mitchell 1 Aug 1941 - ??
- Harold Jack Spencer 29 Sep - 4 Nov 1941
- Herbert Patrick Carter 4 Oct 1943 - 5 Nov 1943
Content has come from The Unit Guide - Volume 6 - The Australian Army 1939-1945 , page 6.244 & 6.245 - Graham R McKenzie-Smith - Big Sky Publishing - 2018