My dog collected our paper, and everyone else’s
IT IS the end of an era for the Lockyer Valley, which will bid farewell to the Gatton Star after decades of dutifully delivering the weekly news.
The loss of the paper is a bitter one for LVRC Mayor Tanya Milligan, whose memories of the paper go back to her childhood.
"My dad bought me a golden labrador for my ninth birthday. I taught him to collect the Gatton Star, and he learnt quickly," she said.
"Unfortunately my beautiful lab was an overachiever and one morning I went out and he had collected half the papers from up our street … all which I then had to return."
The Gatton Star has been an enduring part of Cr Milligan's life since she first entered local politics.
"I have fond memories as a Laidley Shire councillor of first meeting Chilla Johnston - the then editor of the Gatton Star - who religiously attended our council meetings," she said.
"Meetings 20 years ago were a whole lot different then meetings of today, I can assure you. Reporting on council meetings was done via pen and a notebook and I will say Chilla was very accurate with capturing and recording what was said, staying back after the meeting to ask more questions. What a different world we live in, as everyone with a mobile phone is now a journalist, loosely speaking."
She said the partnership between the council and the newspaper - now just across the road from one another - had been a largely positive one.
"Overall I can say the relationship between council and our local paper has been respectful and professional. We have celebrated the fun and happy times but also the sad and distressing times," she said.
"Our paper has captured our history and given us opportunity to collate it in family scrapbooks for our children's children. The paper has been a wonderful conduit between council and community to tell our story."
She mentioned fond memories of some of the paper's current staff.
"I reflect back with a smile on two particular journos, Dom and his assistance to the Murphys Creek community to open their long-anticipated time capsule, at the expense of his leather belt for his trousers, and Ali and her creative methodology in capturing photos, even if I'm standing in a garden, perched up on musical equipment or standing under a giant broccoli," she said.
"I will miss the local paper in its physical form, and I reflect on the incredible staff we have, and have had, in our organisation who commenced at the Gatton Star."
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