2/1st Australian Petrol Depot

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Brief History

As the 1st Australian Corps was about to leave the Middle East in early 1942, there was a need to create service units previously supplied by British units. The 2/1st Petrol Depot was raised at Barbara in Palestine in January before moving to Kantara in Egypt the following month from where they sailed for Adelaide, arriving there in March 1942. In May they moved to Broadmeadows, Victoria, and in August to Mundingburra, Townsville. There they took over the fuel dispersal for surrounding areas as well as handling offshore shipments. A detachment moved to Cairns in September and another formed for service in New Guinea (6th Section, New Guinea Line of Command Area BIPOD). The unit was reorganised as 3 BIPOD in May 1943.

They moved to Milne Bay in June 1943 to service Milne and Oro Bay units, with the HQ, and 1 and 3 Platoons at Milne Bay, and 2 Platoon and the53rd and 54th BIPOD Platoons at Buna. By April 1944 Lae was being developed as a major base and HQ 3 BIPOD moved to Lae to control 52 and 55th BIPOD Platoons at Lae and the 56th BIPOD Platoon at Finschhafen. Between May and August 1944 the 2nd Platoon moved to Queensland, and the 54th and 56th BIPOD Platoons left for Madang in PNG. 1 Platoon at Milne Bay was reorganised as 67th BIPOD Platoon before leaving for Queensland, and 3 Platoon which reorganised as 69th BIPOD Platoon left for Bisbane in August 1944.

53 and 54 BIPOD Platoons left for Torokina in Bouganville during September to free up US troops for the Phillippine campaign. The 52nd BIPOD Platoon left for Aitape in November 1944 to support the 6th Infantry Division and the HQ 3rd BIPOD left New Guinea in December for home leave before reassembling at Homebush in NSW where they remained until they were disbanded in March 1945.

Unit Personnel


Content has come from The Unit Guide - Volume 5 - The Australian Army 1939-1945, pages 5.245 and 5.246 - Graham R McKenzie-Smith - Big Sky Publishing - 2018

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