14.2 C
Byron Shire
September 29, 2021

Vale Doug Anthony, 1929-2020

Latest News

New COVID-19 cases in Byron, Kyogle and Casino

Two new cases of COVID-19 have been identified on the North Coast of NSW casting doubt over Byron Shire coming out of lockdown at midnight.

Other News

A smoothie operator

Mullum, the town with everything, now has its own new specialty smoothie bar...

Getting annoyed with NSW Farmers naming ‘rights’

The Annoying Vegan has become more annoyed today with what they see as the NSW Farmers getting on their high horse about the use of the words ‘meat’ and ‘milk’.

Biggest corporate greenwashers revealed by Greenpeace

According to a new analysis by Greenpeace, most of Australia’s highest-emitting companies that have implemented net-zero emission commitments do not have any will to meet their target.

Cartoon of the week – 22 September, 2021

We love to receive letters, but not every letter will be published; the publication of letters is at the discretion of the online and print letters editors.

Nuclear Submarines – just a foot in the door

In the next few months we will hear a lot about how superior nuclear-powered submarines are. Vice Admiral Mike Noonan is even claiming superior stealth characteristics – which is simply not true. Yes, they tend to be faster. This is great if you want to go thousands of kilometres in a matter of days. But they are also much more expensive.

NSW Farmers want ‘meat’ to be removed from use on plant foods

NSW Farmers are calling for clarification of the vocabulary for alternative proteins and they have submitted a motion to the Senate Standing Committee to review the use of meat vocabulary on plant-based products.

The Right Honourable John Douglas Anthony, AC CH. Photo Wikipedia.

The former Deputy Prime Minister and stalwart of rural politics, Doug Anthony, has died at the age of 90, in Murwillumbah, the northern NSW town where he was born.

A statement from Mr Anthony’s family yesterday advised ‘with heavy hearts’ of his passing in a local aged care facility.

The statement said, ‘Although Doug was privileged to serve the people of Australia in high office, he always considered his family to be his greatest legacy and contribution to the world.

‘He was very much a man of the Tweed region, and it is fitting that he should depart this life from within the community that he loved so much.

‘His family is tremendously proud of his legacy. While always very humble, he made a lasting contribution to the nation, and particularly to people in country Australia.

‘May he rest in peace.’

Leaders remember Mr Anthony

The current Deputy PM and leader of the Nationals, Michael McCormack, said, ‘Today we mourn the loss of one of The National Party’s greatest sons and a stalwart of Australian politics, Mr Doug Anthony, Deputy Prime Minister from 1971-72 and again from 1975-83.

‘Doug Anthony was a man of significant conviction and even more significant achievement. The outcomes he secured for regional and rural Australia have stood the test of time. He was dedicated to ensuring country Australians had a strong voice in Government and that they were not just listened to, but that they were front of mind for Government decision-makers.

‘Doug Anthony stood up for country communities and as part of the Menzies, Holt, McMahon and Fraser Governments, he opened up great opportunities for regional Australia on the world stage,’ said Mr McCormack.

‘As Trade Minister, he expanded trade with Japan and China and was heavily involved in opening up opportunities in the ASEAN countries and in the Middle East and many other countries.

‘As Primary Industry Minister, he was heavily involved in measures affecting the major rural export industries: reconstruction of the dairy industry, the introduction of wheat quotas, the establishment of a wool reserve price scheme and the Australian Wool Commission and the upgrading of Australian export abattoirs.

‘He was a man of decency, integrity, purpose and resolve. Mr Anthony never took a backwards step in advocating for our regions. It is because of Mr Anthony that The National Party stands today in its 100th year of existence.

‘Rural and regional Australia has lost one of our greatest today,’ concluded Mr McCormack.

David Littleproud, Minister for Agriculture, Drought and Emergency Management, and deputy leader of the Nationals, said, ‘The National Party family is today mourning the loss of the Hon. John Douglas Anthony, giant of rural and regional politics and a legend of the National Party.

‘Together with the Deputy Prime Minister and on behalf of the entire federal Nationals parliamentary team I extend my deepest condolences to the Anthony family and to the New South Wales North Coast community that he hailed from.

‘Doug served his electorate of Richmond in Northern New South Wales as well as our nation with distinction as leader of the Country Party and National Party for over 12 years, including as deputy prime minister for almost 10 years.

‘Doug Anthony epitomised the finest qualities of leadership and service and leaves a significant legacy for future generations of National Party representatives to uphold and continue.

‘Our nation has been made richer because of the work he did and we are all poorer for his passing,’ said Mr Littleproud.

On social media, the Member for Page, Kevin Hogan, said ‘I always felt I was in the presence of a legend when I was with Doug. He was always easy with a warm smile and interest in how you were going… He is a role model of mine.’

Politics in the blood

Doug Anthony was the son of the former member for Richmond, Hubert Lawrence ‘Larry’ Anthony, who was Postmaster-General in the Menzies Government until his untimely death in 1957.

Young Doug abandoned his plan to be a dairy farmer and was elected to succeed his father at the age of 27. By 1964 he was the Minister for the Interior, where he campaigned for electoral redistribution favouring country seats.

He became the Country Party’s youngest leader after the retirement of Sir John ‘Black Jack’ McEwen.

Doug Anthony receives an honorary doctorate from Southern Cross University chancellor John Dowd in 2014. Photo supplied.

Later, Doug Anthony became famous for carrying out his Acting Prime Ministerial duties at Christmas time from the family’s holiday caravan at New Brighton, where there was only one shared public phone to conduct the business of the nation.

He helped Malcolm Fraser defeat Gough Whitlam in the 1975 federal election (he had clashed with Whitlam over aid to PNG, believing the country deserved more), supported uranium mining for export, expanded the reach of his party throughout the country and presided over its transition to becoming the National Party.

After retiring from political life in 1984 he spoke in support of Australia becoming a republic. His name gained a new sort of fame when it became attached to the Canberra comedy trio the Doug Anthony Allstars.

Doug Anthony and his wife Margot donated the land for the Tweed Regional Gallery.

One of Mr Anthony’s sons, Larry Anthony, represented the seat of Richmond after his father and became an influential National Party figure in his own right, particularly during the Howard era. He is now a lobbyist in Canberra with the SAS Group.

With his passing, Doug Anthony leaves behind his devoted wife Margot, his children Dugald, Jane and Larry, their spouses and his nine grand-children.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


  1. Unlike the modern day version of the Country Party( the Nationals) Doug did not actually do much harm to the nation, generally serving country people and his local community well.
    He did promote trade with China, especially wheat but at the same time claimed that the Chinese were making a southward push towards us through Vietnam.

  2. Doug Anthony, like few from either side of the political spectrum, was a champion for the people.

    I find it odd or perhaps it’s blatant political censorship that the echo allows a comment like Barry’s above but won’t publish anything that mentions Mungo’s wonderful, but mostly biased, one-eyed, political views.

  3. I met Doug Anthony as a kid on a visit to Canberra when he was the youngest member in parliament. We were impressed that he thanked my brother and I for distributing his election pamphlets , not mentioning the two shillings we were paid. In Canberra – a majority Labor town where I lived for decades – as Minister for the Interior and other departments responsible for the capital, he was held in high regard for his integrity and as the father of the modern city.
    Part of that was his support for Australia’s first comprehensive network of paths around a capital for bicycles. A regular cyclist himself he rode to work every fine day in Canberra, and until his passing he was patron of our rail trail, which will pass by his farm in the Tweed he loved.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

The circular economy in action

Life Cykel is a versatile, forward thinking and high ethos company that focuses on harnessing the circular economy and the great potential that mushrooms possess to create quality products for human, and planetary, health.

Entertainment in the Byron Shire for the week beginning 29 September, 2021

Byron Writers Festival co-presents a special online event with acclaimed author Jonathan Franzen. 

Organic local Koala Tea

Koala Tea has won several awards over the years and has been inducted into the ACO Organic Hall of Fame.

Organic Forrest

Pioneers of the organic food movement, David Forrest and Sue Mangan have been farming in Federal since 1978.