After members had become aware of the existence of a Police Union in Queensland and Police Associations elsewhere, Constable (later Inspector) JJ Mannion GM, convened a meeting of members to discuss the formation of an Association on 12 November, 1939.
Inspector John Creed Lovegrove addressed the meeting saying:
"I wish the Association well and I am of the opinion that the movement will not just be a temporary affair but shall go on and on"
The first Annual General Meeting of the Association was held in March 1940 at which Sergeant Robert 'Jock' Reid KPM was elected President. Sergeant Reid, unfortunately for the Association, was soon to transfer to Canberra as the Commissioner of the Australian Capital Territory Police Force. By April of that same year the Association boasted a membership of 18 - which represented the majority of the non-commissioned members of the Force.
According to Bruce Swanston, who wrote about the Association in 1981, the Commissioner at the time considered the leaders of the Northern Territory Police Association to be "demagogues" and to "have communist tendencies."
Following the bombing of Darwin on 19 February, 1942 and the evacuation of most Police to other centres, the Association ceased to function for the remainder of World War II but was reborn in July 1945 at a meeting held in a school at Alice Springs. Sergeant RR Bridgland became the new President.