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 Liberty Newsletter - April 2021 in Newsletters 2021-04-24 11:48:50 +1000

    Liberty Newsletter April 2021

    Click here to download a PDF of the newsletter.

    This edition of Liberty was to have been all about the Queen’s 95th birthday but, of course, she will not now be celebrating this very special day on the 21st of April as, sadly, she will be in mourning. However, there is no reason why we should not proceed with our celebrations but tempered by our thoughts for the well-being of Her Majesty and accompanied by our prayers and very best wishes as she faces the future without her beloved husband and consort of over 73 years.

    Often outspoken, and with a sense of humour that later generations could not understand and often criticised him for, Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, was the rock on which the Queen and the whole of the Royal family relied upon.

    In this edition we speak about his achievements and, on occasion, faux pas. Also included is the AML media release written by Rachel Bailes, a member of our National Council.

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  • published Happy Birthday Your Majesty in Petitions & Surveys 2021-03-10 21:26:59 +1100

    Happy Birthday Your Majesty



    On the 21st of April 2021, Queen Elizabeth II will be 95 years of age and thus becomes the longest living and the longest reigning monarch in British history. She is a lady who has rarely set a foot wrong during her long reign and is someone who always has a cheery smile for all.

    We all know the words that she spoke by radio from South Africa on her 21st birthday “I declare before you all that my whole life whether it be long or short shall be devoted to your service and the service of our great imperial family to which we all belong.”. From the unexpected time her father became King as George VI, in December 1936, the then Princess Elizabeth began training for her future role as Queen. She was ten years of age at the time and from then on her life was to become one of duty and service, qualities which have dominated her whole adult life.

    As her 95th birthday approaches, 74 years on from those immortal words, the Australian Monarchist League pays tribute, not just to a wonderful woman of duty and inspiration, but to our very own Queen. Please consider adding your name to the form set out below. This will be printed and sent to Her Majesty with our sincere and devoted greetings.

    Yours sincerely

    Philip Benwell
    National Chair
    Australian Monarchist League

    TO: H.M. Queen Elizabeth II

    Your Majesty

    May it please Your Majesty to accept the loyal greetings of the members and supporters of the Australian Monarchist League and particularly of those named hereunder.

    We send to Your Majesty our very best wishes and heartfelt greetings on the occasion of your 95th birthday.  We wish you as much happiness and joy as you have given to all of your people through your constant service and duty to us all.

    Happy birthday Your Majesty.

  • published LANDING PAGE HAPPY BIRTHDAY 2021-03-10 21:05:04 +1100

    Thank you for signing our Birthday Wishes


    Happy Birthday Your Majesty

    Thank you for joining in our greetings to honour our wonderful Queen. The form you have completed will be downloaded with your name and forwarded to Her Majesty closer to her 95th birthday on Wednesday the 21st of April 2021.

    The Australian Monarchist League works tirelessly to defend the honour of the Queen and the integrity of the Crown within the Australian Constitution and has done so for over 25 years. If you wish to find out more, there is information about us and what we do on this website. If you have not already done so you can also opt to receive our notifications which we send out from time to time - just click here. Of course, you are always free to opt out at any time.

    We do have a financial membership. Details are here should you wish to further support the cause of constitutional monarchy.

    Again, thank you. Let us all join in wishing Queen Elizabeth, our sovereign Queen, a very happy 95th birthday.

  • published 69 years on the Throne in News 2021-02-05 22:25:59 +1100

    69 years on the Throne

    A Glorious, and Yet a Sad Day
    It was a poignant day for her as the moment she became Queen was the very same moment that she lost her beloved father, George VI.  
    A new and youthful Queen in 1952 but today for all or for certainly most of the lives of all the people born in Australia, Elizabeth II, by the Grace of God Queen of Australia has been their sovereign head of state. 


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  • published Liberty Newsletter January 2021 in Newsletters 2021-02-01 22:15:45 +1100

    Liberty Newsletter January 2021

    Click here to download a PDF of the newsletter.


    Letter to Members - January 2021

    In January 2020 we could have had no idea of the tragedy that was to befall us and, indeed, the world.  Whilst there were cases of COVID19, we were unconcerned until there were large outbreaks and then lockdowns commenced in this country.  Despite the virus being continually brought in by overseas travellers, we remain one of the lucky countries in the world despite a number of tragic deaths which should have been avoided.

    A year ago, we were discussing the surprise upset of the Duke and Duchess of Sussex removing themselves from royal duties.  I suppose, in a year hence, we will still be discussing them and their doings in the United States of America.  The tragedy was that Prince Harry was extremely popular in this country, even to the extent of a great number of people wanting him to live here on a semi-permanent basis.

    In Australia, we have been facing another upset, this time with social media rejecting certain of our posts wanting us to remove words which apparently offend others. We do know that republicans have set up teams to monitor our social media and to register complaints that they are offended by certain things that we say.  Of course, unlike republicans, everything we post is diplomatically worded and factually correct, but it seems that the controllers are on the left and they view us as being on the right which is certainly not true.

    The Australian Monarchist League stands for the Australian Constitution and the Crown.  We honour the Queen and we value our system of governance.  We are neither politically right nor left.  We are monarchists and constitutionalists, insofar as we support Australia's system of constitutional monarchy. 

    Whenever I may use the term 'left', I do not refer to Labor voters, many of whom are members and supporters of our organisation.  Rather I refer to those who seek to tear down our structures of democracy.  It is these people that label themselves to be on the left of politics.  The Australian Monarchist League has no formal alignment with any political organisation.  As I said, we are monarchists and we are constitutionalists.

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  • published Advance Australia Fair in News 2021-01-08 09:08:48 +1100

    The Story of Advance Australia Fair




    The change to Australia’s national anthem with “For we are young and free” amended to “For we are one and free” has met with mixed results for varying reasons with some for, some against, others not bothered and with some wanting a new anthem altogether. 
    However, what the change has done is to make people realise that Australia’s national anthem actually has no legal basis.  There is no act of Parliament and other than several surveys and a confusing poll in the 1970s which voted on a tune and not the words, there has been no formal plebiscite whereby the people, whose national anthem it is supposed to be, have been given an opportunity to vote both before the adoption of a sanitised song was announced in 1984 or when it was amended in 2021.
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  • published Christmas 2020 Letter to Members in Newsletters 2020-12-18 21:20:44 +1100

    Christmas 2020 Letter to Members

    In just a few days’ time we will be celebrating Christmas.  In this letter which was mailed earlier this week, I had said that, due to a measure of freedom from the virulent virus, families will be now able to gather together and Christians will be able to attend church with only limited restrictions. However, Sydney now faces a growing cluster of the virus brought in by returning travellers which could spread unless great care is taken.
    Whilst our thoughts and prayers are with those in Sydney's northern beaches and to those caught up in the several State lockdowns, I send to all my sincerest of wishes and those of the Australian Monarchist League for a very merry and blessed Christmas as well as a most enjoyable time over the festive season.  Even with the Sydney cluster, we are so fortunate to live in Australia where the dreaded virus is not rampant as it is in so many other countries.  At the same time, it is wise to always take care as it lurks like a vampire in the mist and one never knows what the morrow will bring.
    And the week following Christmas will see us in the New Year of 2021.  Let us all hope and pray that next year will see the end of the virus so that we can all get back to living relatively normal lives although, after the enormous changes and devastation wrought by the pandemic and the reaction to it over past months, there will obviously be a new normal to which we must all adapt.
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  • published Liberty Newsletter November 2020 in Newsletters 2020-11-14 20:29:23 +1100

    Newsletter November 2020

    Click here to download a PDF of the newsletter.

    The Duke of Cambridge Tested Positive For COVID-19 in April

    News has recently been released that the Duke of Cambridge, Prince William, had tested positive for COVID-19 in April but is understood to have kept his diagnosis quiet because he didn't want to cause worry particularly since his father, the Prince of Wales, had also tested positive just weeks earlier.

    During the crisis and particularly during his father’s isolation, Prince William was the active face of the monarchy.

    He had isolated for seven days at Anmer Hall in Norfolk where the Duchess of Cambridge and their three children were also staying. Fortunately, none of them had caught the virus.

    During his isolation, although he was ill, he continued to carry out engagements including some 14 telephone and video calls. In this manner he has followed the example of the Queen and his father, the Prince of Wales, in putting duty first and foremost.

    Hopefully things will soon start to normalise and we can look forward to a visit by the Duke and Duchess and their three children to Australia.

    The Anniversary of The Republic Referendum

    On the 6th of November 2020, monarchists celebrated the 21st anniversary of the defeat of the republic referendum in 1999. This was the day when the majority of Australians, both nationwide and in all States, voted decisively against a republic and for the Queen.

    It was the day when MalcolmTurnbull, the then head of the Republican Movement, attacked John Howard saying, in front of the news cameras, that he was "the prime minister who broke this nation's heart." Actually, the reverse was true. Howard actually bent over backwards to be fair to the republican movement, even changing the wording of the referendum to suit Turnbull.

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  • published Royal News in Our Monarchy 2020-08-25 15:25:50 +1000

    Royalist Page

    Royal Blog Page

    Prince Charles Message of Hope

  • published Liberty Newsletter August 2020 in Newsletters 2020-08-13 13:30:21 +1000
  • Letter from Sir John Kerr


    This is the letter informing the Palace that Sir John had terminated the commission of Gough Whitlam as Prime Minister. In his words “I should say that I decided to take the step I took without informing the Palace in advance because under the Constitution the responsibility is mine and I was of the opinion that it was better for Her Majesty not to know in advance, though it is, of course, my duty to tell her immediately.”


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  • published The Palace Letters (Text Format) in The Kerr Papers 2020-08-10 15:47:46 +1000

    The Kerr Letters

    Statement by Mr R. J. Ellicott QC

    Letter from Sir John Kerr

    Letter from Sir John Kerr

  • Letter From Sir John Kerr

    This letter covers commentary following the Budget including the statement by the Leader of the Opposition, Malcolm Fraser MP that “no election will be precipitated this year unless some unexpected and serious change occurs.” It should be noted that the Opposition, comprising the Liberal and Country Parties, had the support of two independent senators, this giving them a majority in the Senate. (see the paper ‘Reminiscences – 1975’ extracted from the book by P Benwell ‘In Defence of Australia’s Constitutional Monarchy.’

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  • Letter from Sir John Kerr

    Letter dated 30 September, 1975

    In this letter, Sir John advises that the Attorney-General has said privately that he was of the clear view that the Senate had the legal power to reject the Appropriation Bills. He also raises the fact that the Prime Minister had spoken to him about an early half-Senate election.



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  • Letter from the Palace

    Letter from Sir Martin Charteris dated 2 October 1975

    In this reply, Sir Martin mentions a conversation Sir John Kerr had with Prince Charles in Papua New Guinea and that Sir John had spoken of the possibility of the Prime Minister advising The Queen to terminate his commission. Sir Martin says that “If such an approach was made you may be sure that The Queen would take most unkindly to it… but I think it is right that I should make the point that at the end of the road The Queen, as a Constitutional Sovereign, would have no option but to follow the advice of her Prime Minister."

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  • Letter from Sir John Kerr


    In this letter, Sir John makes reference to his “somewhat verbose correspondence”. He mentions that “Mr Whitlam is, so far, making his major thrust in the area of the constitutional crisis with allegations of coup d' état putsches etc. Mr Fraser however is concentrating heavily on economic issues and the state of the nation.”


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  • Letter from Sir John Kerr


    In this letter, Sir John mentions both the personal attacks on him but also the letters and indications of support. He mentions the ‘rage’ of Whitlam supporters over his termination and how he feels it is counterproductive.

    It was possibly the way in which Labor contested the 1975 election campaign, fully expressing its rage, that led to the people turning against Gough Whitlam and leading to its massive defeat.


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  • Letter From The Palace


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  • Letter From The Palace to Gordon Scholes


    In this letter Sir Martin confirmed that the action taken lay within the powers solely of the Governor-General of Australia. “Her Majesty, as Queen of Australia, is watching events in Canberra with close interest and attention, but it would not be proper for her to intervene in person in matters which are so clearly placed within the jurisdiction of the Governor-General by the Constitution Act.”


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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.