Campaigners in the UK have welcomed the release of the palace letters in Australia.

The letters show that the Queen was aware of what was happening in Australia and knew the Governor General was considering dismissing the prime minister.

They also show the Queen giving advice to the Governor General, including the suggestion that dismissal of an elected prime minister was an option.

Graham Smith, speaking for Republic, said today:

"We're told the Queen's main role is to advise and warn her prime minister, yet she took no action to warn Gough Whitlam that his Governor General was considering such drastic action."

"Whitlam still had the confidence of the house, he had recently been re-elected, yet the Governor General thought he could over-rule the people and the constitution and dismiss the PM."

"Kerr wrote to the Queen on many occasions and made it clear what he was thinking of doing. The Queen fully engaged with that discussion and made no attempt to warn or advise Whitlam."

"The Queen should be making a statement this morning, explaining her actions and apologising to the Australian people."

"I have now doubt Australians will be looking at these letters and wondering why they have put up with the monarchy for so long. I hope they now lead the way in moving to a republic."