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Wednesday Lunchtime Lecture: The Dutch in Camp Columbia

April 12 @ 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm

Free – $10

On Wednesday the 12th of April, as a part of the Royal Historical Society of Queensland’s Wednesday Lunchtime Lecture series, Paul Budde will deliver a talk on “The Dutch in Camp Columbia.”

Paul, the acting president of the Dutch Australian Cultural Centre, will speak on the fascinating history of the Camp Colombia site. The presentation will cover the history of the site including:

1. A border police station was established in 1842, starting a long history of law enforcement in Queensland on this site.

2. In 1942 the Sixth US Army headquarters were formed and stationed on this site. They named it “Camp Columbia”. Here they established a camp with an extensive infrastructure, including an officers’ school, hospitals, sewerage plants and housing for its personnel. This was the main Allied Staging Camp for the war in the South Pacific during WWII.

3. In 1944 the site was taken over by the Netherlands East Indies Government-in-Exile. This was the first time that a foreign government was hosted on Australian soil. There was close co-operation between the Australian and Dutch transport squadrons. They looked after all transport, between Australia and the Dutch East Indies, from food and medicines to ex-prisoners from Japanese internment camps. The last Dutch transport plane left Archerfield airport in September 1947.

4. After World War II, parts of Camp Columbia were used by the Australian military and then served as a migrant reception and training centre. Other parts are now occupied by the Brisbane Correctional Centre.

5. The site of the Camp earmarked for the Heritage Park is the publicly accessible Pooh Corner Environmental Reserve.

Speaker Biography:

Paul has had a successful career within the telecommunications and information industries and a lifelong passion for history and heritage preservation in Australia and his native Netherlands.

Paul started his own telecommunications research company in the Netherlands in 1978. In 1983 he moved to Sydney. Highlights of his career include his time as the co-initiator of the UN Broadband Commission for Digital Development and working as an independent strategic adviser to the Minister for Communication regarding the fibre-based National Broadband Network. In 2009 Paul was invited to present his views on national broadband and the digital economy to President Obama’s advisers at the White House and to several other governments. In 2019, after selling the research part of his business, he moved to Brisbane, where he is now involved in advising local councils on Smart City developments.

Back in the Netherlands, where he was born, he was actively involved in the heritage preservation of the City of Oss, where he lived and wrote articles and several books on the local history. In Australia, he initiated the Convict Trail Project Inc., which looks after the 250 km long convict-build road between Sydney and the Hunter Valley; he was its president for 25 years. He also researched the history of the Darkinjung people in the Lower Hunter Valley.



April 12
12:30 pm - 1:30 pm
Free – $10


The Royal Historical Society of Queensland


Commissariat Store Museum
115 William St
Brisbane, 4000 Australia
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