Randwick Barracks received a steady flow of visitors on its first open day in many years.
CAPTION: An officer from Australian Army 16th Aviation Brigade speaks to visitors about the EC-135 at the Randwick Barracks Open Day. Story by Captain Katy Manning. Photos by Private Sarah Fisher.
Resident Army and Navy units on base provided displays, while an EC-135 helicopter from Navy Fleet Air Arm in Nowra joined the October 28 event.
Brigadier Michael Garraway said it was a great opportunity to inform locals about the role of the barracks.
“It’s important for members of the public to get the full appreciation of what it means to be in the Australian Defence Force and to understand the capabilities generated here at Randwick,” Brigadier Garraway said.
“Much of our preparation for operational deployments is conducted here. We have a lot of really important training that occurs here.”
The Navy demonstrated its Phalanx close-in weapon system (CIWS), a static display of the rapid-fire, radar-guided gun system that defends warships.
Petty Officer Stephanie Horswood said the CIWS was popular with attendees.
“It has been really great to see how interested the kids are in those STEM subjects – electronics and those sorts of things,” PO Horswood said.
“They are so keen and they’re so excited to see the weapon systems.”
Captain Ben Williams, of 17th Sustainment Brigade, said there was a lot of interest in the displays.
“It was a good turnout. There were a lot of people from the local area that came to have a look and see what we do,” he said.
“We had two of the bomb disposal robots with our ammunition technicians. We also had our command post from the 17th Sustainment Brigade, and an air dispatch display from 176 Air Dispatch Squadron.”
The layout of the open day allowed a high degree of interaction between the troops and the visitors, the majority of whom were visiting the barracks for the first time.