With the recent decision of the newly installed Prime Minister of Australia to dispense with Knights and Dames, there is now only one place on the Australian mainland where you can still become one. The only drawback is you do have to pay for it.
The Republic of Wynnum announced the launch of its ‘cash for honours’ program earlier this year, and now boasts a peerage of thirty aristocrats, including two knights and a dame. Bringing together the best of feudal tradition and new ‘republican’ thinking, the Republic of Wynnum cash for honours program reverses the way that honours work in other parts of the world, and shows how a republic with an aristocracy can work.
In the Republic, the only way you can claim a title like ‘prince’, ‘earl’ or’ knight’ is to pay for the privilege. To become a prince for example the fee is $25, and for this you receive a specially inscribed Republic of Wynnum passport (which is aristocratic purple as opposed to the standard brown), plus a certificate authenticating your new title.
Many other titles are available online on the country’s official website – republicofwynnum.org – and fees for all of these titles are set out there. Titles are only recognised in the Republic of Wynnum.
“This approach avoids the problems of other countries with criticism of appointments and occasional scandals regarding titles. In the Republic we are egalitarian and transparent – we are happy to exchange cash for honours.” explained a spokesperson. “Our focus is on making the Republic a tourist destination for Australians as well as visitors from around the world and turning the centre of Wynnum into a vibrant place.”