Queen Elizabeth has marked her third day in Australia by formally receiving Prime Minister Julia Gillard at Government House in Canberra, before meeting with Opposition leader Tony Abbott.

She will be in Brisbane on Monday, and preparations are already underway for her arrival.

Tom Gillespie reports.


The Queen enjoyed a relaxing second day on her trip to Australia yesterday, receiving a tour of the Government House grounds and even getting in a bit of gardening.

Today was a more formal occasion, meeting with the Prime Minister and Opposition leader Tony Abbott.

Almost everything in Brisbane will come to a standstill when the Queen arrives here, including the Ferry system.

The City Cats will be closed for three and a half hours on Monday for her walk down the Culture Forecourt to meet some of January’s flood vicitms, hosted by Premier Anna Bligh.

The Queen will also be in South Bank to open the new Rain Bank, a water conservation and re-use system that will provide 85 per cent of the parkland’s water requirements.

Malcolm Snow, CEO South Bank: “We live in the driest continent in the world. There’s nothing more certain than the fact that we will be experiencing drought again.”

The system collects storm water from the 30 hectare parklands and pumps them into tanks for storage.

There a is a multi-stage treatment process that makes the water available for various uses throughout South Bank.

Damien Stiler, Principle Engineer: “The intention initially is the water will be used for irrigation, topping up water features throughout the parklands. There is also provisions within the treatment plants to supply water to toilet flushing down the track.”

The Queen last visited South Bank when she opened it as a part of Expo ’88.

Mr Snow is confident she will be impressed by the changes.

Malcolm Snow, CEO South Bank: “South Bank is today a transformed place from the one the Queen may remember all those years ago. So we’re honoured and delighted to be able to show just what that transformation involved.”

Queen Elizabeth will officially open the system at 1:15pm on Monday.

Tom Gillespie, QUT News.