Back in 1983 Jack McLean saw the need for an organisation to bring together all those in Australia who enjoy studying and/or collecting timetables.
Here is what Jack wrote in the first edition of The Times in September 1983.
The History of the first 25 years of the AATTC and ATA was written by Victor Isaacs and published in The Times in June 2009. An expanded history, covering the 40 years to 2023, is currently being written.
The ATA was set up at about the same time as a similar organisation in the USA, the National Association of Timetable Collectors (NAOTC). Although both were set up by people interested primarily in railways, their fields of interest now cover all transport modes. Both names include the word “timetable”, but members and founders of both are interested in “transport logistics” or “how transport systems are run”. Although the word “collectors” is associated with both organisations, they are not primarily composed of people who collect for the sake of collecting. Rather, members are people who wish to understand and to compare past and present transport methods. A high proportion of the ATA membership are current or retired transport professionals.