TO FIRMLY ESTABLISH AUSTRALIA'S NATIONAL DAY IN THE UK, IN 2004 THE NEWLY FORMED AUSTRALIA DAY FOUNDATION HELD THE INAUGURAL GALA DINNER IN THE SPLENDOUR OF THE AUSTRALIAN HIGH COMMISSION IN LONDON.
The Gala Dinner is the centrepiece of all the UK Australia Day celebrations and has become the most important event in the Australian calendar. The Foundation celebrates not just our national day, but Australia’s history, its stories and anniversaries. For example in 2007 Australia celebrated 100 years of surf lifesaving and the theme for the Gala Dinner was ‘2007 Year of the Surf Life Saver’.
In 2008 the Royal Flying Doctor Service celebrated their 80th year and Qantas celebrated 60 years of service – the perfect opportunity for the Foundation to celebrate ‘Flying Down Under’. The Foundation supports other events under the Australia Day umbrella and these are included in the year in which they have taken place.