Editorial

John Flynn Place, Cloncurry.I MUST start with a confession. On Friday I was invited down to John FlynnPlace in Cloncurry for the book launch of Everald Compton’s The Man on the Twenty Dollar Notes, his biography on Flynn.
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Now, I’ve been to Cloncurry several times but I’ve only had a hazy idea of what John Flynn Place was.

In fact I believedit was exactly that, just a “Place” and not an actual building as such. I also confused it with the park that was down the street from Shire Hall, and the only structure I was aware of in that park was the public toilets.

So when I arrived at that park at Scarr St I was a bit concerned to see no cars there and only then did I notice the name of the park “Florence Clarke Memorial Park”.

Clearly this was not “John Flynn Place”.

Anyway, after a couple of minutes re-orientation I did find the actual John Flynn Place and I was stunned to see quite how big the facility was.

In fact, I’m ashamed of my lack of knowledge of this great place (in every sense of the word “place”).

Only once inside did I find out its story, a building there since 1988 as a bicentennial project commemorating the great man John Flynn and his many Cloncurry connections.

As the museum’s own website says,John Flynn Place honours an Australian visionary and those who joined his campaign for better living conditions in remote Australia and the museum recounts an era of technological advance, when aviation and radio overcame the isolation of vast tracts of the continent.

Cloncurry plays an important role in Flynn’sstory, for it was here hebegan his Royal Flying Doctor Service in 1928 and pioneered his scheme of outback radio communication.

The Friends of John Flynn Place have done a wonderful job and they say they are indebted to the support of Everald Compton and his wife Helen over the years.

They helped fund the museum’s newest exhibit, a video called Mantle of Safety, about some of the RDFS’s early missions in the region.

Everald is an enthusiastic supporter and itwas an appropriate spot to launch his book.I look forward to coming back now I know where it is!

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