Albury mayor, Alfred Waugh and the Governor of NSW, Sir Philip Game got to know each other well, well enough for Game to send Waugh a Christmas card.
Shortly before Waugh and Game first met, there was a most memorable event involving Game and Lang: the opening of the Sydney Harbour Bridge on March 19, 1932.
According to protocol, Sir Philip Game should have been the person to open the bridge, but Premier Jack Lang decided to cut the ribbon himself. Game was a passive onlooker when Captain de Groot, in support of the protocol and in protest against Jack Lang’s actions, came riding along on horseback and pre-empted Jack Lang’s cutting of the ribbon.
Just a few days later, on April 6, 1932, Sir Philip Game came to Albury for the gold cup meeting at the Albury Racecourse.
On arrival, mayor Alfred Waugh gave him a civic reception, and subsequently, Game attended the race meeting and presented the Albury Gold Cup, donated by Alfred and Ellen Waugh, to W R. Kimball, the New Zealand owner of the winning horse, Lady Pam. That evening, Alderman Waugh hosted a dinner for Sir Philip Game.
Just over a month later, on May 13, 1932, Sir Philip Game invoked the reserve powers of the Crown to dismiss Jack Lang and his government.
On October 24, 1934, the ‘Uiver’ made its successful night time emergency landing on the Albury Racecourse, the same racecourse at which Game had presented the Albury Gold Cup.
Game was still the Governor of NSW, although in January 1935 he returned to England, where he took up the position of Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police in London. On August 22, 1935, the day after Alfred and Ellen Waugh had afternoon tea with Queen Wilhelmina at St Fillans in Scotland, they returned to London and had lunch with Sir Philip Game at the Army and Navy Club in Pall Mall.
Subsequently, Sir Philip Game sent Alfred Waugh a Christmas greetings card, on which he penned the note: ‘Crossing the desert between Damascus and Bagdad. All good wishes to you for Xmas from Philip Game. Langham House. Ham Common Surrey.’
This extraordinary Christmas card to the Albury mayor from a person engulfed in the turmoil of NSW politics of the early 1930s has survived, is held by the Albury Library Museum, and over 80 years later revives memories of those tumultuous days.
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Meetings are held on the second Wednesday of the month at the Commercial Club Albury, commencing at 7.30 pm, all are welcome to attend.
- Noel Jackling, Albury & District Historical Society