RSLWA started the 2015 Centenary of ANZAC year with the ANZAC-themed Royal de Luxe Giants from France striding through Perth and we are ending the year with yet another giant stride – towards building new headquarters to serve all members.
It is incredible satisfying to end the year with the State Government agreeing to hand back the freehold title to 13000sqm of land on which ANZAC House sits. This of course will be subject to an acceptable business plan.
As I have reported many times to members, the development of new headquarters will help RSLWA to win financial independence, provide far better facilities for its current members and hopefully attract an even wider group of current and former ADF personnel into our ranks.
All the hard work is still ahead of us to develop the best concept and satisfy ourselves and government that we have a viable business plan which will sustain us into the future.
Another cause of satisfaction is the immense effort put in by individuals and sub-branches throughout the State.
Our members held commemorative services on ANZAC Day, Victory in the Pacific Day and Remembrance Day which were moving and meaningful. In addition our sub-branches provided the mateship, social contact, welfare and advocacy support for each other which is indeed the essence of the RSL.
However, I am ever mindful of the sub-branches that have struggled this year while our overall membership has increased for the first time in seven years, there are still several clubs facing closure, They need, we all need, more support from men and women from younger generations.
I express the RSL’s considerable gratitude to Lotterywest for their strong financial support. The agency is again digging deep to assist us to present ANZAC Day services next year and in various other ways.
I wish all members, staff and families a peaceful, happy and joyous Christmas. The New Year promises to be a very good one for the RSL with its State congress and Centenary Ball at the Crown Resort in June.
Above all I thank you for your contribution to the betterment of the RSL in WA
Graham Edwards AM