It is with sadness, but also tremendous gratitude, that I today mark the passing of Queen Elizabeth the Second.

On behalf of Sutherland Shire Council and the residents of our community, I wish to extend condolences to all those mourning her loss and to express thanks for the incredible life of service she led and the remarkable legacy she leaves behind.

Throughout her seven decade reign, Queen Elizabeth II was a frequent visitor to our shores, deeply loved by those whose lives she touched, and held in the highest of respect by those she served.

This could not have been more powerfully demonstrated than the throngs of local residents which descended on Sutherland to catch a glimpse the royal procession when the young Queen Elizabeth II visited the Sutherland Shire in 1954, mere months after her coronation. Her return visit in 1970 to oversee a reenactment of the arrival of the HMB Endeavour on the shores of Kurnell some 200 years after this historic event, also spoke to her deep appreciation of the unique role our community occupies in the history of our nation.

While this speaks to a different era, the esteem in which she is held has never dimmed, nor I’m sure has the memory of these historic visits for those who were there. I’m sure residents of the Sutherland Shire, like those throughout the Commonwealth and across the world, will join me today in paying respects to our longest serving monarch, an enduring figure of stability and service, Queen Elizabeth II.

Sutherland Shire Mayor, Councillor Carmelo Pesce

Image: A welcome banner marks the visit from Queen Elizabeth II to Sutherland Shire in 1954.

Queen Elizabeth the Second's visit to Sutherland Shire in 1954