2009 EVENTS

The reception in our Vintage Oz cellar was followed by a stunning dinner and guests enjoyed a medely of wines from Australia’s famous wine regions including Tasmania, Clare Valley, Margaret River, Barossa Valley & the Riverina.

GALA DINNER 2009

Vintage Oz Cellar, Australia House
24th January
2009
In 1788 Captain Arthur Phillip alighted at Sydney Cove importing Australia’s first grape vines from Brazil and the Cape of Good Hope. This tentative start was the birth of a thriving viticultural industry that in a fraction over 200 years would be exporting over 800 million litres of wine to the world. 

Australia has over 60 designated wine regions and the diversity of grapes and resulting wines is cause for celebration. So in 2009 the theme for the Gala Dinner was‘Vintage Oz’

 

AWARDS 2009

Phil Aiken, Sir David Attenborough, Gill Hicks, Matt Wilkin, HE John Dauth
Gill Hicks
Australian of the Year in the UK
For her extraordinary courage and dedication to promoting peace around the world, the Australia Day Foundation considered Gill Hicks a truly worthy recipient of the 2009 Australian of the Year in the UK award.
 
On 7 July 2005 Gill Hicks was no more than two feet from one of the bombers when he detonated his device on a crowded Piccadilly Line train. After four days in a coma, she woke up to discover she had lost both her legs.
 
In inspirational fashion, she learned to walk again, married her partner of seven years Joe Kerr, and dedicated herself to deterring people from using violent action.
 
She was appointed an ambassador for Peace Direct in 2006 and an advocate for Leonard Cheshire Disability in 2007, and recently founded MAD for Peace, a non-profit organisation that uses art and design to promote peace-building. She carried the Olympic torch in Canberra last year, and she and Kerr devised and completed a 250-mile walk from Leeds to London called WalkTalk, designed to bring communities together. In the 2009 Queen’s New Year’s Honours list, Gill was awarded an MBE for her services to charity.
 
Adelaide-born Gill Hicks has lived in London since 1992 and has worked in design, publishing and as a curator, including becoming a fellow of the Royal Society of Arts. She has published a book of her post 7/7 experiences, is well known for her talks and seminars in the UK and Australia and is now a tireless ambassador for peace.
 
For her extraordinary courage and dedication to promoting peace around the world, The Australia Day Foundation considered Gill Hicks a truly worthy recipient of the 2009 ‘Australian of the Year in the UK’ Award.
Sir David Attenborough OM CH CVO CBE FRS
Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK

Through his natural history and wildlife films and books, the world has had the opportunity to appreciate the diversity of Australia’s extraordinary wildlife and terrain and the Foundation considered Sir David Attenborough a worthy recipient of the 2009 Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK award.

Australia Day UK Awards 2009Sir David Attenborough’s Natural History films are the most watched on earth and he’s brought the world and its glories to our TV screens for over 50 years. Sir David has worked for the BBC since 1952. In a dazzling career he’s produced 21 series and written 16 books as well as hosting quizzes, political broadcasts, gardening and religious shows. He’s run BBC2, introduced colour to TV to Britain and in 1969 was made director of programmes for both the BBC’s television channels. But he resigned to return to programme making and in 1979 launched the landmark series, Life on Earth.

The programme featured the ancient fossilised Gogo Reef in Western Australia. Australia found a unique way to honour Sir David’s role in highlighting the reef’s importance: he has a fossil of a prehistoric fish giving birth named after him – materpiscis attenboroughi.
 
The award recognises Sir David’s role in putting some of Australia’s most spectacular fauna, flora and landscapes in front of a worldwide audience during his extraordinary six-decade career at the BBC. According to a recent online poll, the UK’s favourite Attenborough moment came when he was filming in Australia for his 1998 series The Life of Birds - it showed Sir David watching the Australian lyrebird mimicking various noises.
 
Through Sir David’s natural history and wildlife films and books, the world has had the opportunity to appreciate the diversity of Australia’s extraordinary wildlife and terrain and the Foundation consider Sir David Attenborough a worthy recipient of the 2009 ‘Honorary Australian of the Year in the UK’ Award.
Matt Wilkin, MS
Young Australian Achiever of the Year in the UK

Matt Wilkin has proved that if you work hard to achieve your goal you will succeed, and the Australia Day Foundation considered him a most worthy recipient of the 2009 Young Australian Achiever of the Year in the UK award.

A South Australian who has lived in the UK for 10 years, Matt Wilkin has won a string of awards – most recently for his newly opened Princess Victoria gastro pub in west London, which won Time Out’s award for Best Gastro Pub 2008 within four months of opening.

 
In 2005 Matt became the first Australian to qualify as a Master Sommelier - one of only 164 Master Sommeliers in the world and which he rates his proudest achievement.
 
He learned his trade in Australia, and didn’t take long to make a splash in London: he was soon in charge of the wine lists at some of the capital’s top Michelin-starred restaurants, and he has won UK Sommelier of the Year titles from Wine International, Harpers & Queen/Moet & Chandon and Trophee Champagne Ruinart.
 
Matt Wilkin has proved that if you work hard to achieve your goal you will succeed, and the Australia Day Foundation considers him a most worthy recipient of the 2009 ‘Young Australian Achiever of the Year in the UK’ Award.
 

Chef's Table

Guest Australian Chef Brett Graham
Brett Graham

When 15 year old Brett Graham was scaling fish at a restaurant in Newcastle NSW, little did he know that at the at the tender age of 26 he would be awarded a Michelin star within a year of opening The Ledbury in London’s Notting Hill and be recognised by his peers as one of the most talented and enthusiastic chefs to rise up in recent years. When asked to guest chef at the 2009 Gala Dinner in Australia House, Brett said he was excited about being involved in such a fantastic Australia Day celebration. Brett’s Australia Day menu included Western Australia Rock Lobster and Australian Lamb.

CLASSIC BLEND

'Operacatz'
Operacatz
‘Operacatz’ delivered a stunning performance with highly original, witty and dramatic renditions of classic operatic arias. Australian soprano Daniella Ehrlich founder of Operacatz is an Australian Mezzo Soprano who graduated from the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She has studied in New York, worked in Europe and will be performing at Opera in the Arboretum in Pearl Beach in March. Daniella is to perform the role of Mercedes in the production of Carmen for Longborough Festival Opera. Soprano Rosie Havel was Daniella’s other Operacatz.
 
 
 
 
Our other talented young Australian classical performers were Australian tenors performing the original, award winning ‘The Three Waiters’ act conceived in Sydney 10 years ago.  Three very talented 'waiters' - Mark Dickinson, Damien Humberly and Damion Scarcella.

SPONSORS

Gold

BHP Billiton
Fosters EMEA
Macquarie Group
National
Australia Group Europe
QantasRio Tinto
Telstra
Westfield

Silver

Anglo American
BG Group
CQS
International Power
Proudfoot Consulting
Robert Walters
The Weir Group
Tourism Australia

 
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© Australia Day Foundation / 2017