Digitised@SLQ - Premier T.J. Ryan policy speech 18th February 1918
State Library recently digitised the 1918 Policy Speech of Thomas Joseph Ryan, Premier of Queensland from 1915-1919.
Mr. Ryan had sailed north to Townsville in the S.S. Bingera for the purpose of delivering the speech in Townsville on the 18th February 1918. An unprecedented number of people greeted his arrival, and after an informal reception at the Queen's Hotel, the Premier, escorted by the Mayor Alderman Clegg, proceeded to the Town Hall for a formal civic reception with a number of town dignitaries. In responding to the Mayor's toast to his health, the Premier pointed out that he had come to Townsville to deliver his Policy Speech because he 'recognised the importance of the city as the capital of North Queensland, and as one of the most important ports in the whole of Australia'. The Premier delivered his Policy Speech in the Theatre Royal that evening.
Premier Ryan's speech covered a wide range of government interests and concerns - the recent floods, infrastructure development, agriculture and forestry, the mining industry, and state owned enterprises, from stations, butchers and fisheries to sawmills and banks. In commenting on the Great War, the Premier also covered repatriation initiatives, and the issue of war profiteering.
Robyn Hamilton - QANZAC100 Content Curator, State Library of Queensland