A letter written from the Belle-Vue Hotel in Brisbane by P.G. Taylor on the morning of 21 October 1934, the day that he and Smithy departed from Archerfield for Fiji in the "Lady Southern Cross". The letter was apparently intended to counter mounting criticism of what was perceived to be a perilous flight. Smithy and Taylor stayed at the Belle-Vue on the nights of 19 and 20 October. The hotel stood on the corner of George and Alice Streets, Brisbane until April 1979 when, despite protests from the National Trust, it was levelled in a midnight demolition under police protection and in the presence of an estimated 700 protestors. Nearly thirty years later, the demolition of the Belle-Vue still ranks as an iconic example of failure to preserve Brisbane's heritage.

© Phil Vabre Collection
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