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 at QCWA Charters Towers Branch Charters Towers

Visit to the Charters Towers Branch of the Queensland Country Women’s Association

Members of the QCWA Charters Towers branch, I hope you will indulge me as I make some brief remarks to acknowledge the significance of this occasion.

My week-long residency in Charters Towers, is the seventh occasion on which I have undertaken the complex logistical exercise of what is termed ‘Regional Government House’.

It may be a major undertaking for the staff of Government House, but I know that it also involves a significant effort by the host town.

I am very grateful to everyone in Charters Towers for the warm welcome offered to us.

Extended visits like this give me a unique opportunity to establish a greater depth of connection with regional communities and to incorporate into my itinerary organisations which are at the very heart of the community – organisations like the QCWA.

Although this is my fourth visit to Charters Towers, this is the first time I have been able to visit the QCWA – although I know former Governor Penny Wensley visited here in 2014. An image of that visit, by the way, features in the latest Government House publication, The Governors of Modern Queensland ­– a copy of which I have brought with me today!

While the organisation is no longer celebrated solely for its contribution to cookery, I am certain there could be no more appropriate place than this for me to have afternoon tea! I know Kaye, as your proud Patron, agrees with those sentiments – although she was unable to come on this visit.

Kaye and I regret that I will no longer be in office next year when QCWA celebrates its one hundredth anniversary. As you know, there has been a vice-regal association from the very beginning in 1922 when Sir Matthew Nathan, the then Governor, took a strong and active personal interest in establishing this organisation.

Thank you again for your hospitality and for all that you do for the community of Charters Towers and for those who live in regional, rural and remote Australia.