Perc Tucker

Percy John Robert "Perc" Tucker (5 December 1919 – 20 August 1980) was a member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly. He was the leader of the opposition in 1974.[1]

Perc Tucker
Tucker in mayoral robes c. 1976
Leader of the Opposition of Queensland
In office
1 July 1974 – 7 December 1974
Preceded byJack Houston
Succeeded byTom Burns
Member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly
for Townsville North
In office
28 May 1960 – 27 May 1972
Preceded byNew seat
Succeeded bySeat abolished
Member of the Queensland Legislative Assembly
for Townsville West
In office
27 May 1972 – 7 December 1974
Preceded byNew seat
Succeeded byMax Hooper
Personal details
Percy John Robert Tucker

(1919-12-05)5 December 1919
Rockhampton, Queensland, Australia
Died20 August 1980(1980-08-20) (aged 60)
Townsville, Queensland, Australia
Political partyLabor
Spouse(s)Isabel Mary Campbell (m.1944)


Tucker was born in Rockhampton, Queensland, the son of Percy Clifford Tucker and his wife Beatrice (née Guthrie). He was educated at Rockhampton state and high schools before being employed in Brisbane by the Department of Public Works in 1937. He then worked as a draftsman in Rockhampton[1] before moving to Townsville in 1955[2] and continuing the trade until 1960.[1]

During World War Two Tucker enlisted with the RAAF in December 1940 but was discharged a month later. Then in March 1943 Tucker once again enlisted, this time with the Australian Army and served with the 42nd Australian Infantry Battalion in New Guinea and Bouganville.[3] From 1948 until 1955 he was a captain in the reserve army.[1]

On 20 June 1944 he married Isabel Mary Campbell, a hairdresser, at the Holy Trinity Church in Mackay[4] and together had three sons and a daughter.[1] One son, Rodney, died at a young age in 1956[5] after breaking his arm and died on the operating table whilst under anaesthetic.[2] Tucker died in Townsville in August 1980[1] and his funeral was held at the John Knox Presbyterian church[2] and he was later cremated.[4]

Public lifeEdit

Tucker, representing the Labor Party, won the new seat of Townsville North at the 1960 Queensland state elections. He held the seat until it was abolished for the 1972 Queensland state elections, at which Tucker followed most of his constituents into the new seat of Townsville West.[1]

From July 1966 until July 1974 Tucker was the deputy opposition leader under Jack Houston. He was then appointed opposition leader upon Houston's retirement. Facing an election later that year, Tucker famously vowed to give Premier Joh Bjelke-Petersen a "hiding." However, the Queensland ALP was roundly defeated, falling to a "cricket team" of only 11 seats. Tucker himself lost his own seat to National Max Hooper–one of the few instances in which a major-party leader at the federal, state or territory level has been rolled in his own seat.[6][1]

Tucker wasn't finished with politics however, and in 1976 he was elected the mayor of Townsville, holding the role until his death in 1980.[1] The Perc Tucker Regional Gallery (opened 1981) in Townsville is named in his honour.[4]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "Former Members". Parliament of Queensland. 2015. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Death of Mr P.J.R. TuckerHansard. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  3. ^ TUCKER, PERCY JOHN ROBERT — World War Two Nominal Roll. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  4. ^ a b c Tucker, Percy John Robert (Perc) (1919–1980)Australian Dictionary of Biography. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  5. ^ Family history researchQueensland Government births, deaths, marriages, and divorces. Retrieved 24 April 2016.
  6. ^ Madigan, Michael (17 March 2012). "Queensland Labor barely alive after future leadership decapitated in state election". The Courier-Mail.
Parliament of Queensland
New seat Member for Townsville North
New seat Member for Townsville West
Succeeded by
Max Hooper