Stories from the Central Highlands will now be available on the CQ News website.
Stories from the Central Highlands will now be available on the CQ News website.

Format change for 83-year-old masthead

The Central Queensland News has been through many iterations.

A six-page weekly newspaper in the 1950s grew to eight, 10, 12 pages in 1964, and 26 pages in 1978.

In the ‘80s it transitioned into a bi-weekly newspaper for the Central Highlands, and most recently, a weekly paper published every Friday.

After this week’s edition, there will be another change: the 83-year-old masthead will become entirely digital.

Since its inception, CQ News has reported on the big and the small in the Central Highlands – floods, fires, emergencies, as well as school, sport, and business news.

We spoke with two public figures about the story of the newspaper and their relationship with it.

Member for Gregory Lachlan Millar called it “distinctively of the Central Highlands”.

“As a boy growing up,” he said, “I noticed that farming families always organised their visits to town for a Wednesday or a Friday. So did many grazing families from further out.

“They would attend to their business, purchase supplies and never leave town without picking up their copy of the Central Queensland News.

“Council meetings, shows, fundraising, local sports and, of course, natural disasters were all faithfully recorded. The CQ News gave the communities of the Central Highlands the space to hear their own stories in their own voices, to have a public discussion of local issues and to celebrate local achievements.”

Emerald Chamber of Commerce president Victor Cominos said that he first became aware of the newspaper as a child.

At age 16 he opened an account to advertise in the CQ News.

“The humming of the old printing presses fascinated me,” Mr Cominos said.

“I decided to occupy part of my family’s general store to sell photographic equipment and to advertise. That same year I appeared in a school concert and received accolades on the front page of the CQ News.

“It all seems so long ago.”

Central Highlands Regional Council mayor Kerry Hayes last week wrote the following about the digital shift:

“It’s not over and our communities have the same expectations today as they did when the first printed paper hit the footpath in Clermont Street.

“Let’s hope that great and purposeful ideology is preserved in whatever format that our news arrives in.”

Stories from the Central Highlands will now be available on the CQ News website.


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