Sir Graham McCamley doesn't support the decision to bring back knights and dames.
Sir Graham McCamley doesn't support the decision to bring back knights and dames. Kathleen Calderwood

No support for knights and dames from Sir Graham McCamley

AN ACT of gallantry saw Graham McCamley knighted in 1986.

But 28 years on and the Central Queensland grazier cannot understand why Australia would want to reintroduce the honorary titles of knights and dames.

"I just see it as unnecessary," the 81-year-old said yesterday. 

"We moved away from the Imperial system to an Australian honours system, which is recognised everywhere in the world.

"That is how it has been for quite a long time. I think that once the decision is made, we should stick to it."

Sir Graham believes strongly that deserving Australians should be recognised; he just thinks the country should not be wavering between two honours systems.

"Of course, we must honour the people who have done great things for this nation but I think the Australian system has been running for too long now to go changing things again," he said.

Prime Minister Tony Abbott made the surprise announcement last week that he would restore the titles for pre-eminent Australians. He described it as "an important grace note in our national life".

Under Mr Abbott's plan, up to four Australians will receive the honour every year, with Governors-General to automatically receive the title.

Sir Graham wears his title with little pretence, but admits it garners him special regard in the wider community.

"In the end, though, I'm still just Graham."  

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