Philip Benwell, MBE

He had earlier coordinated the Queen Elizabeth Gate Appeal in Australia raising the largest amount of any Commonwealth country other than the UK. The Appeal had been established by Prince Michael of Kent to build the Queen Elizabeth Gates in Hyde Park, London as a tribute to the Queen Mother.

Benwell has written a number of books and papers including:

“In Defence of Australia's Constitutional Monarchy.”
ISBN: 07734-66967 (2003)

“A very public affair – The Australian Constitution and Crown.”
ISBN: 978-0-646-51652-3 (2013/4)

"Australia - Our Country, Our Constitution, Our Governance."
ISBN: 978-0-646-96330-3 (2016).

Prior to his involvement in the Australian Monarchist League, Benwell had been engaged in various community and sporting activities. He was awarded the MBE in 1976 for his work within the community.

His advice on the Australian and British Constitutions has been often sought in Britain and elsewhere. The late Lord Molyneaux of Killead commented that Benwell “is renowned not only in Australia but throughout the Commonwealth for his dedication to sound governance. His first-hand experience of structures in most nations of the world, where his judgment is widely respected, has led to his advice being widely sought in democracies great and small.”

He has written ‘The Wattle Crown’ as a tribute to Her Most Gracious Majesty, Queen Elizabeth, Queen of Australia, whom he has served in a voluntary capacity for half of his life.

  • published The 2023 Referendum Bill in Petitions & Surveys 2023-01-10 23:49:04 +1100

    The 2023 Referendum Bill

    The federal government is changing the way in which referendums will be held and are introducing a new referendum bill into the Parliament.

    Whilst the Constitution specifies the way in which people vote at a referendum, the mechanics of how they do this are contained within an Act of the Parliament.

    The proposed Referendum Act (the Referendum Bill (Machinery Provisions) Amendment Bill 2023) will:

    • Require strict disclosure of campaign donations and expenditure.
    • Restrict foreign donations.
    • Remove any funding for the ‘Yes’ and ‘No’ campaigns.
    • Fund MPs to communicate with electors via modern communication methods with appropriate authorisations.

    As far as providing detail on what changes to be made to the Constitution, the Minister for Indigenous Australians, the Hon Linda Burney MP, is reported to have stated that ‘the exact model (of the Voice to the Parliament) would be settled after the vote, saying “that was a matter for parliament.”’ (quote from SMH 1/1/23)

    Whilst the Australian Monarchist League has no defined position on the Voice, we stand vehemently against any move to flout the traditional conventions governing referendums or to bypass the provision of full information to the people to enable them to make their own decisions. 

    If the government succeeds in getting away with this subterfuge, we can expect the same to occur with a referendum on a republic.  We therefore urge all monarchists to sign the below letter to the Prime Minister and to the Leader of the Opposition. We will also be making representation to the Parliament in this regard.

    We would emphasise that by signing this letter you are not making a commitment one way or the other on the matter of the Voice only in regard to the proposed Referendum Act which is so dictatorially biased in favour of the government position that it silences and virtually disenfranchises all opposition.

    Thank you

     



    Open Letter to:

    The Hon Anthony Albanese MP
    Prime Minister
    Parliament House
    CANBERRA ACT 2600
    &
    The Hon Peter Dutton MP
    Leader of the Opposition
    PO Box 6022
    House of Representatives
    Parliament House
    Canberra ACT 2600

    RE: Referendum Bill (Machinery Provisions) Amendment Bill 2023

    The undersigned are of the opinion that the provisions contained within the Referendum Bill (Machinery Provisions) Amendment Bill 2023 are insufficient to enable voters to be properly informed prior to casting their votes at a referendum and request that the following amendments and conditions be considered prior to its passage through the parliament:

    1) First, that full disclosure is made of the exact text that is proposed to be approved by the referendum for insertion into the Australian Constitution;

    2) Second, that steps be taken to inform the entire electorate precisely regarding each of the following:
    a. how, by that proposed text, the Voice to the Parliament will be constituted;
    b. how the body would operate;
    c. to explain the process and eligibility for determining membership;
    d. to describe what powers and influences it would have over whom and to what effect;
    e. to describe the checks and balances by which its powers would be circumscribed; and
    f. importantly, to provide information to the electorate regarding the extent to which the proposed text could be anticipated to be sent to the Courts for adjudication on the constitution, operation, and powers of the Voice.

    3) Third, that the Bill, if it becomes law, require that hard-copy statements from both the official Yes and No cases making the case for or against constitutional change be sent by Australia Post to all electors, as has been near-universal precedent since 1912.

    SIGNED:

     

  • published AML Online Groups in Petitions & Surveys 2023-01-03 12:16:00 +1100

    AML Online Groups

    As we enter 2023, we are restructuring and expanding the Australian Monarchist League to enable us to better face the government’s campaign to remove the Crown from the Australian Constitution.

    To assist us in this regard we are forming a few online groups and invite monarchists to join any eligible group if they wish.

    These initial groups are:

    Women’s AML Group
    This will be a group for ladies to meet online and discuss monarchy matters relevant to them.

    Veterans Group
    This is a group for the many veterans we have amongst our database may wish to join together to support the Crown that all have made allegiance to uphold.

    Over 65s Group
    Any monarchist over 65 is invited to join this group.

    Fundraising Group
    This is a group to bring together persons with professional fundraising expertise.

    Online Format
    The format for meeting online will be decided by each group

  • published The King's Christmas Message 2022 in News 2022-12-26 10:47:59 +1100

    The King's Christmas Message 2022

    The King's Christmas Message 2022

     

     

    You may also wish to view Alexander Voltz's AML arrangement of "God Save The King" which was published at the time of the Accession of Charles as King. You can view it here: https://youtu.be/jA4_qx-_A6k

  • Albanese's words on republic run hollow

    The prime minister has stated that the Voice was his sole priority, rather than a referendum on a republic and that timetables for that change were “not on his agenda”.

    If this is so, then why has Mr Albanese designated an Assistant Minister for the Republic in his first ministry and why has he initiated a ‘national consultation tour’ reported to be to ‘shape a future campaign to cut ties with the monarchy’.

    We are afraid that his words run hollow when it is also reported that the round of ‘consultation’ talks will occur over the first half of 2023 and be run by the Attorney-General’s Department and funded by the taxpayer, ostensibly to the tune of several million dollars, with key findings and trends to be collated to help the government’s approach to holding a referendum on a republic.

    Read more
  • published Letter to Members December 2022 in Newsletters 2022-12-06 19:59:14 +1100

    Letter to Members December 2022


    LETTER TO MEMBERS DECEMBER 2022

    With our warmest greetings for a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year for 2023.
    We sincerely hope and pray that it will bring joyous tidings compared to the upsets we all faced in recent times.

     




    Read more
  • published AML 2023 SURVEY in Vote No Republic 2022-11-25 07:55:17 +1100

    AML 2023 SURVEY

     

    The following is a short survey to find out what sort of activities you want us to do bearing in mind that the Australian Monarchist League is not a social organisation for members but primarily a lobby and campaign organisation to educate on and defend the Australian Constitution and Crown against attack.


    Please note that our next activity is a lunch n Sydney with the Hon. Eric Abetz, Chairman of the AML Campaign on Wednesday 30 November 2022
    Please find information here to book:  Lunch with Hon. Eric Abetz

  • published Lunch Survey in Petitions & Surveys 2022-11-15 14:05:44 +1100

    Survey on What Functions Best Suit Members

    This survey has been created around the luncheon we have with our campaign chairman, the Hon. Eric Abetz scheduled for 30 November. However, your answers to the questions contained herein will assist us in organising AML activities in future.

    For your information you can also access details of the lunch here: Hon. Eric Abetz Lunch

  • published Lunch Survey in Petitions & Surveys 2022-11-15 13:49:56 +1100

    Survey on What Functions Best Suit Members

    We note that you have not booked in for the lunch with the Hon. Eric Abetz on Wednesday 30 November and, to assist us in being able to better cater to the requirements of members, are wondering whether you can let us know why you will not be attending this lunch and what sort of functions you would prefer.

    For your information you can access details of the lunch here: Hon. Eric Abetz Lunch

  • Monarchists Launch Protest Against The Crown

    Monarchists to launch protest against The Crown

    The falsehoods and inaccuracies, particularly about His Majesty the King as Prince of Wales, being broadcast in season 5 of Netflix series The Crown, will lead monarchists and right-minded people to withdraw support for the programme and Netflix as a whole if the platform does not act to correct the record. 

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  • Have a Referendum First before Campaign

    During the recent election campaign, Mr Albanese purposefully led the people to believe that a republic would not be on its agenda in its first term and yet one of his first acts in government was to arrange for the appointment of an Assistant Minister for the Republic. The first time there has ever been a minister of the Crown to remove the Crown!

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  • published Keating should apologise in Media Releases 2022-10-14 14:41:38 +1100

    Keating should apologise

    Although he has become very bitter in his old age, there is one thing that Paul Keating has not lost, and that is his penchant for purposefully misinterpreting comments by others to suit himself.

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  • published Coronation Holiday in Media Releases 2022-10-14 14:40:06 +1100

    Monarchists call for Public Holiday for Coronation

    The Australian Monarchist League, Australia's largest member-based monarchist association, is calling upon the Australian government to declare a public holiday in recognition and in honour of the Coronation of the King, who by right of the Australian Constitution is King of Australia.

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  • The Prince and Princess of Wales to Visit Australia

    The Prince and Princess of Wales to Visit Australia

    The Australian Monarchist League is delighted to learn that the Prince and Princess of Wales are proposing to tour Australia in 2023. In the event they are accompanied by their children, it will be the first opportunity for Australians to see Princess Charlotte and Prince Louis on Australian soil.

    Read more
  • Monarchist Petition Dutton to Level the Playing Field


    Monarchist Petition Dutton to Level the Playing Field

    The Australian Monarchist League, Australia’s major organisation in opposing the government’s plans for a republic, is so concerned about the unfair advantage the Labor government has provided to republicans by gifting them a government minister that it has raised a petition with over 1000 signatories calling on the Leader of the Opposition, the Hon. Peter Dutton MP, to create a Shadow Assistant Minister for the Constitution.

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  • Assistant Ministry for the Republic Should Be Abolished

    Monarchists Call for the Assistant Ministry for the Republic to Be Abolished.

    The Australian Monarchist League is calling on the Prime Minister to either abolish the Assistant Ministry for the Republic or, should he decline to do so, to either remove the Republic ministry or that of Defence and Veterans’ Affairs from the Assistant Minister as Defence and Veterans’ Affairs have nothing whatsoever to do with the government’s plans for a republic.

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  • published Are We on the Verge of Anarchy? in Media Releases 2022-10-06 09:19:11 +1100

    Are We on the Verge of Anarchy?

    Are We on the Verge of Anarchy?

    The pledge of allegiance was included in the Australian Constitution by our Founding Fathers for the specific purpose of ensuring that members of the Australian parliament accepted and were loyal to the Australian Constitution, the Australian system of governance and the Rule of Law. The pledge, whether by oath or by affirmation, is taken by MPs and Senators following their election or re-election to the Parliament. It is a pledge that binds them for life and can only be removed by the sovereign.

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  • Pledge to Queen Needs to Go Say Republicans

    Pledge to Queen Needs to Go Say Republicans

    The Australian Republican Movement have just conducted a survey through the polling company Essential Media asking the question “As you may be aware, elected members of the Australian Parliament are required to make a pledge of allegiance. Who do you think they should be required to pledge to serve and bear allegiance to?”

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  • published The Morrison Portfolios in Media Releases 2022-10-06 09:13:06 +1100

    The Morrison Portfolios

    Republic No Answer to the Morrison Portfolios

    The Assistant Minister for the Republic, Matt Thistlethwaite, has said (Australian 22/8/22) in talking about Mr Morrison’s extra portfolios that “If we had a head of state that was appointed by the Australian people then it is my view that the prime minister would not have gotten away with this” but then, I thought Mr Albanese had insisted there was no illegality.

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  • The Thistlethwaite Indoctrination Campaign

    The Australian Monarchist League was disappointed to read The Sydney Morning Herald’s interview (3/9/22) with The Hon. Matt Thistlethwaite MP, Assistant Minister for the Republic.

    Firstly, concerning this interview, The Sydney Morning Herald sought no comment from the Australian Monarchist League or the Vote No Republic campaign at large. The Australian Monarchist League has specifically requested that, in the interests of the Australian people, it be approached to provide equal commentary in opposition to applicable remarks published or aired by Mr Thistlethwaite, Peter FitzSimons, or any other republican spokesperson. This request was reported nationally only five days ago. The Australian Monarchist League is deeply concerned that The Sydney Morning Herald appears biased in its presentation of arguments pertaining to the removal of the Crown from the Constitution.

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Philip Benwell
Philip Benwell has been the national chairman of the Australian Monarchist League for thirty years and is the longest serving head of any organisation engaged in defending the Australian Constitution and Crown.