WELLINGTON, Arthur Wellesley
Arthur Wellington was born in Victor Harbour, South Australia, on 4 August 1915, and was the eldest child and son of parents Norman Llewellyn Wellington and Una Miriam Martin. He had two sisters and one brother.
Wellington commenced work with the Postmasters-General (PMG) on 4 June 1930 and immediately became a Telegram Messenger at Jamestown. He worked his way up through the grades in various locations throughout South Australia, including a stint at Port Lincoln with Hurtle Bald. In June 1938 he was transferred from Clare to Pinnaroo and his parents gave him a small reception before he took up the post.
Wellington married Clarinda Jericho, daughter of Bernhard Jericho and Elizabeth Jane Hammat of Wilmington, South Australia, on 21 October 1939 in Mitcham, South Australia. Nin, as she was known, was an accomplished pianist, having passed Trinity College examinations from London with honours in 1925–1926.
When extra help was called for in Darwin in mid 1940 due to the opening of Post Offices at a number of defence establishments, it became necessary to provide extra assistance to the main Darwin Post Office. Postmaster Hurtle Bald and postal clerk Tom Mansfield both asked for Wellington; he agreed to go only if a house was available. It was suggested that he go by plane to Darwin and that his wife travel with the Bald family by boat. This was rejected by the Wellingtons and they both went by air.
They arrived in Darwin in September 1940 and stayed at the Don Hotel, later moving into No. 3 residence. Arthur and Nin Wellington had a daughter Aldyth, born on 26 June 1941. When she was five months old, Nin and Aldyth were evacuated by road and rail to Alice Springs in December, 1941. Arthur had volunteered to stay behind.
After his family were evacuated, Wellington moved into the Cable Company’s Single Men’s quarters that had been used as Divisional Engineer’s office and accommodation for the married men whose families had been evacuated to southern states.
Wellington was a keen tennis player; he played in competitions such as the Annual Strathalbyn Tennis Tournament in 1935, and while stationed at Clare in 1938. Wellington took up the sport again in Darwin when they arrived in 1940. He often partnered Hurtle Bald in the 'B' Grade competition held by the Tennis Association in 1941.
On 18 February 1942 Arthur wrote a last touching letter to Nin and Aldyth which has been replicated in Battling: Territorians and their war. by Peter and Sheila Forrest.
Wellington was heard to say "She’s on", (from personal communication held on file by Parliamentary Education Services) by Edward Coonan as they were all making their way to the trenches after the air raid siren sounded. The trench in which the Post Office staff sheltered received a direct hit, killing all the occupants. Wellington’s body was later found in a nearby tree.
Wellington was buried in a temporary grave at Kahlin Beach; he was then re-buried at the Berrimah War Cemetery, and his final resting place is the Adelaide War Cemetery.
Wellington received a Civil Service Medal 1939–1945 posthumously on 30 June 2000, with the citation CPS (Commonwealth Public Service). This medal is for civilians who served in arduous circumstances in support of the war effort as part of organisations with military-like arrangements and conditions of service.
Wellington Parade in the Darwin suburb of Alawa was named in his honour,
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