IN THE library was a photograph of Queen Elizabeth II wearing a hard hat while on a tour of Mount Isa Mines during her royal visit to the city in April, 1970.
During the Queen’s Accession Day morning tea on Monday it’s noted to constitutional monarchist Barry Byrne how solemn she appears to be.
“She has a stiff upper lip. She always does her duty but she has a lovely personality,” Mr Byrne said. “It’s always duty first when it comes to the Queen.”
A similiar photograph was published on the front page of the North West Star’s April 17, 1970, edition. The newspaper covered the two day royal visit extensively.
The Queen and Prince Philip stayed the night at Casa Grande. The Queen visited the Mount Isa Royal Flying Doctor Service Base while the Duke received the Mount Isa Mines underground tour. He spoke with apprentices above ground while waiting for the Queen so they could receive the ground tour.
They toured the Buckley Avenue Flats, attended a mini-rodeo at Kalkadoon Park in their honour, and met more than 6000 children, some traveling as far as Burketown and Birdsville to be there. The Queen also presented sports trophies at Mount Isa Mines primary school.
Reporter Rosslyn Anning wrote at the time that eight-year-old Bernadette Dargan, from Cloncurry’s St Joseph’s Convent, presented a bouquet to the Queen at Alexandra Park.
“The Queen asked her how many children came from Cloncurry and the Duke asked ‘do you have to work hard there?’ Bernadette said ‘yes’ and Prince Philip replied, ‘that’s not so good then’.’”
Reporter David Hooper wrote that the Queen visited the RFDS operations section and teleprinter room where she met Winifred Seaton, who was reportedly stunned at having spoken to the Queen.
“I think we have all been kind of brainwashed that the Queen sits on a pedestal high up there above the heads of all ordinary people. She is just like anyone else. I was amazed at the casual way she walked through the base and spoke to us. She was marvelous,” Winifred said at the time.
More than 17,000 people attended the mini-rodeo held on April 15, 1970.
The Duke is reported to have hardly taken his eyes from his binoculars while watching the action.