RICHMOND Valley residents wishing to pay their respects to Queen Elizabeth II will have the opportunity to do so next Thursday, 22 September, at Queen Elizabeth Park, Casino.
Richmond Valley Council Mayor Robert Mustow said many people were looking for a way to honour The Queen, who passed away last week, aged 96.
Cr Mustow said the Richmond Valley had a strong connection with Queen Elizabeth, following her visit in February 1954 with her husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh.
He said after the Royal visit, Carrington Park in Casino was officially renamed Queen Elizabeth Park, and the Coraki section of the Casino-Woodburn Road was changed to Queen Elizabeth Drive to recognise the Royals’ journey to the Evans Head RAAF base for their flight out.
He said the two magnificent Bunya pines now standing tall in Queen Elizabeth Park were planted by Her Majesty and the Duke of Edinburgh during the official civic reception. The original flagpole has also been restored to its former glory and will be used during Thursday’s event.
“Although I have no memory of The Queen’s visit, many residents tell me it was a memorable event,” Cr Mustow said.
“Around 15,000 people braved the rain to welcome The Queen and Prince Philip to Casino, many having camped in the streets overnight.
“History will remember the kindness, compassion and strength of Queen Elizabeth II.”
Queen Elizabeth II was the first and, to date, the only reigning British monarch to visit Australia. Since her first visit in 1954, The Queen has visited Australia another 15 times.
Thursday’s service will get underway near the Bunya pines, which are located near the riverbank, at 10.45am. It will involve the laying of floral tributes, a minute’s silence and a flag-raising ceremony. Everyone is welcome to attend.
Richmond Valley residents can express their sympathies on the passing of Queen Elizabeth II in condolence books available at Richmond Valley Council’s customer service centres in Casino and Evans Head.
The books are available for signing in Casino from 8.30am-5pm Monday-Friday, and in Evans Head from 8.30am-4.30pm Monday-Friday and 9am-noon Saturday.
These books will be collected and sent by Federal Member for Page Kevin Hogan to Buckingham Palace and archived by the Commonwealth, forming part of the lasting record of Australia’s close relationship with The Queen over many decades.