In 1962 the Duke of Edinburgh asked Sir Winston Churchill, then aged 88, what memorial he would like to be established in his name. Churchill suggested something like the Rhodes Scholarships, but available to all and on a much wider base. As a result of this request, a fund-raising exercise was organized and was prepared to swing into action the moment Churchill died.
Sir Winston Churchill died on 24th January 1965 and the Churchill Memorial Appeal Day occurred on Sunday 28th February 1965 .
On that day in Queensland , 30,000 collectors called on 600,000 homes. All monies collected on that day were banked on that day. Banks opened especially for the Appeal Day. The Queensland goal was $180,000, while Australia wide the objective was $2 million. In Queensland $428,000 was collected and $4.5million Australia wide.
This is probably the most successful fund-raising ever in Australia – as remarkable as the man it honoured!
Those funds collected in 1966 and wisely invested, have enabled over 4000 Fellowships to be awarded in Australia, 675 are Queenslanders.
The Churchill Fellows Association of Queensland (CFAQ) is an association with a membership made up of recipients of Churchill Fellowships.
Queensland has over four hundred very talented Churchill Fellows from all walks of life, in fields which are many and varied and from all over the State.
The first Churchill Fellowships were awarded in 1966 and since then 675 Fellowships have been awarded in Queensland by the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust.