HMAS Nirimba

HMAS Nirimba is a former Royal Australian Navy (RAN) training base located at the former RAAF Station Schofields at Schofields, a suburb of Sydney, in New South Wales, Australia.

HMAS Nirimba
Schofields, Sydney, New South Wales in Australia
TypeNaval base
Site information
Operator Royal Australian Navy
Site history


Nirimba is a Darug word meaning pelican.[1]

Schofields aerodrome was evaluated for use as the site of the RAN Aircraft Repair Yard, following the formation of the Royal Australian Navy Fleet Air Arm in November 1950. The RAN moved in and Schofields was temporarily commissioned as HMAS Albatross II, RANARY Schofields with a contingent of Royal Navy officers and sailors supplementing the RAN Component. In January 1952, the Royal Australian Air Force transferred control of the base to the RAN, but remained in residence until September 1952.[2]

On 1 April 1953, the Royal Australian Naval Air Repair Yard Schofields was commissioned as HMAS Nirimba, a joint RANARY and technical training establishment for RAN Fleet Air Arm. The Aircraft Repair Yard was short lived however, and was closed down in early 1955 and HMAS Nirimba and the airfield were reduced to "Care and Maintenance" status.[2]

In September 1955, preparations began to recommission HMAS Nirimba as the RAN Apprentice Training Establishment (RANATE) for Naval Apprentice training. The establishment reopened in January 1956, Captain F L George RAN assumed command. On 4 January 1956, HMAS Nirimba was paid off to recommission the next day as HMAS Nirimba, RAN Apprentice Training Establishment. Nirimba was finally decommissioned on 25 February 1994, having trained some 13,000 young men and women from the RAN and other Commonwealth navies.[2]

The site has since been redeveloped as the Nirimba Education precinct and houses facilities for the Western Sydney University, the Western Sydney Institute, Wyndham College and the St John Paul II Catholic College.[1]

The site also the scene of dress rehearsals for the 2000 Olympic Games opening ceremony.

See also


  1. "Nirimba Education Precinct". Governors of the Nirimba Education Precinct. Retrieved 13 August 2017.
  2. "Background of the R.A.A.F. / R.A.N. at Schofields". HMS Nabthorpe. Archived from the original on 21 October 2012. Retrieved 13 August 2017.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)

Further reading

  • Royal Navy Fleet Air Arm
  • Royal Australian Air Force Museum
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