September 16, 2022

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II died peacefully at Balmoral Castle on 8 September. Her Majesty served as monarch of the Commonwealth for 70 years. Upon her death being confirmed by Buckingham Palace, Operation London Bridge and, as she died in Scotland, Operation Unicorn were set into motion.

Statement from Mayor Zac Miles

We acknowledge and pay our deepest respects to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, a  cultural and constitutional giant in the lives of the people of Australia and the Commonwealth. The loss of Her Majesty is far-reaching and its effects will be felt here, and around the world, for many weeks to come.

For Hunters Hill, we were lucky enough to have had her and the late Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, visit our Municipality during their first tour to Australia in 1954- as a budding Monarch a mere eight months after her coronation on the throne of St Edward.

The Royal tour was truly exciting for Hunters Hill – residents turned up in great numbers to wave and cheer at the open topped motorcade as it glided past Boronia Park, on Ryde Road- something specially arranged for the people of Hunters Hill by request of the Council of the day.

It’s a cherished moment in the history of our community, and that first tour of Australia was also a momentous time for our country; the first time a reigning monarch had ever visited our shores. 70 percent of our population at the time turned out to see her during the exhaustive eight-week tour, at the time the largest event ever organised for the Commonwealth.

As with periods of mourning, there is reflection, too.

Queen Elizabeth II reigned for 70 years; the longest-reigning monarch in British and Commonwealth history, and the second longest-reigning monarch of a sovereign state in world history.  From Churchill to Truss, from Menzies to Albanese; some of the greatest periods of the 21st century have unfolded under her sceptre.

It’s no surprise then that for most of us, Her Majesty is the only reigning monarch we have ever known. She has been the Head of State for more than half of the existence of the Commonwealth of Australia since our Federation in 1901.

During her life of service to our nation, Queen Elizabeth II earned a reputation for her timeless decency, faithfulness and served as a steadfast reminder of the continuity of the Westminster tradition. As Prime Minister Albanese noted, she “always accepted the wisdom of the Australian people”, a strength of not only hers, but of our current system of government also.

Her wisdom and presence provided comfort through the years – some more turbulent than others, yet she always endured calmly and with great purpose. It is the grace and fortitude with which she handled the challenges of her time that we will remember her by.

Beyond her royal duties, Her Majesty was a mother, a grandmother, and a great-grandmother; she doted openly upon her family members.

We thank members of the public for contributions that have been made to our condolence book, to which Council will add its own letter of condolence. Following the official period of mourning, these messages will be collated and sent, via the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet, to Buckingham Palace.

The end of this second Elizabethan age is a solemn time, but the respect and fondness for our Queen will always remain. We will not see her like again in our lifetimes.

I conclude by noting that over the last week we have seen an ancient adage much repeated through modern social media: the Queen is Dead, Long Live the King.

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Hunter’s Hill Council

22 Alexandra Street, Hunters Hill NSW 2110
PO Box 21, Hunters Hill NSW 2110
Tel: (02) 9879 9400
ABN: 75 570 316 011