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Member Details

Mr Frederick FLOWERS (1864 - 1928)

Member Photo
Date of Birth: 04/03/1864
Place of Birth: Dilhorne, Staffordshire, England
Date of Death: 14/12/1928
Place of Death: Strathfield, New South Wales, Australia
Parliamentary Service
Position Start End Period Notes
President of the Legislative Council 27 Apr 1915 14 Dec 1928 13 years 7 months 18 days
Minister of Public Health 22 Apr 1914 27 Apr 1915 1 year 6 days
Minister of Public Instruction 27 Nov 1911 29 Feb 1912 3 months 3 days
Colonial Secretary and Registrar of Records 07 Nov 1911 26 Nov 1911 20 days
Secretary for Lands 04 Aug 1911 26 Nov 1911 3 months 23 days
Vice President of Executive Council and Representative of Government in the Legislative Council 21 Oct 1910 27 Apr 1915 4 years 6 months 7 days
Member of the NSW Legislative Council 12 Jun 1900 14 Dec 1928 28 years 6 months 3 days Life Appointment under the Constitution Act. Date of Writ of Summons 6 June 1900.
Political Party Activity
Australian Labor Party (ALP). Chairman of Labor Electoral League 1894; first president of the Political Labor League 1895, holding position until 1898; Labor candidate for Legislative Assembly in 1890s and for Australasian Federal Convention 1897; delegate to federal conference 1900; member central executive to 1912; president 1906 until 1907.
Community Activity
Qualifications, occupations and interests
Painter and plasterer. Arrival at New South Wales with family c. 1882. Worked as painter and plasterer; joined United Painters' Trade Society, representing it on the Trades and Labor Council. Vice President of the Trades and Labor Council in 1892. Commissioner of the New South Wales Fire Board, Chairman 1915; Chairman and Trustee of Taronga Park 1912-1928; Chairman Tramway Construction Board 1920; Director of Royal Prince Alfred Hospital 1916-1918; Director of New South Wales Travel Bureau Ltd 1926; Member Meat Industry Board; active Member Abbatoirs Employees' Welfare Association; Member Universal Pervice League 1915; President South Sydney Rugby League Club 1908-1928; Patron PSW Rugby Football League 1910-1928; first Chairman League's Australia Board of Control 1924. Led Temperance Mission, Newtown, 1892. Author of The Hospital System in New South Wales, 1912-1913.
Military Service
Honours Received
Membership of other Parliaments & Offices Held
Local Government Activity
Son of William, gardener, and Dorothy Robinson. Married Annie Foster on 26 January 1888 at Sydney and had issue, 2 sons and 2 daughters. Church of England.
Additional Information
Text from the book: 'The Presiding Officers of the Parliament of New South Wales', Sydney, 1995 Frederick Flowers was born on 4 March 1864 in Staffordshire, England. He arrived in New South Wales as young man and married Annie Foster on 26 January 1888. They had two sons and two daughters. A painter by trade, Flowers joined the United Painters' Trade Society and worked his way up through the Industrial Labour Movement. A pioneer of the political Labor movement, Flowers was closely associated with the formation of the Labor Electoral League in 1890 and 1891. He became the first President of the New South Wales Labor Party, which until 1918 was referred to as the Political Labor League. As Chairman of several Annual Labor Party Conferences, Flowers emphasised the importance of the party's educative functions as well as the importance of its pursuits outside of Parliament. Flowers was deeply involved in the development and expansion of Taronga Park Zoo over a number of years. Flowers unsuccessfully contested the seats of South Sydney in 1891, Newtown-St Peters in 1895 and Waterloo in 1898 and despite the Labor Party's intention to abolish the Legislative Council because of difficulty in obtaining seats, William Lyne appointed him to the Legislative Council in 1900. At that time Labor held five seats in a House of sixty. In the State's first Labor Government of 1910, Flowers became Vice President of the Executive Council and the Government's Representative in the Legislative Council. As a Minister, Flowers made many important contributions including improvements to police working conditions while Colonial Secretary, and as the first Minister for Public Health he oversaw the introduction of public health centres for mothers and infants. Appointed President of the Legislative Council in 1915, he was admired for the efforts he took to orientate new Members with Parliamentary procedure and his willingness to consult with Officers of the House. Although he split with the Labor Party over the conscription issue in 1916 he remained the President of the Council until his death from diabetic complications on December 14,1928 at Strathfield.