Loyal reader embraces Daily Mercury’s new era
INSTEAD of two papers, Bradley Andrews will now read one.
A long-time reader of the Daily Mercury, about 63 years, Mr Andrews is pleased to see the Courier Mail is publishing a section dedicated to the Mackay region. Although he has a computer, he prefers to read local stories in hard copy.
Mr Andrews was 18 when he made the move from Blackbutt to Mackay. The previous year a mate of his had made the migration, and Mr Andrews decided to leave the timber industry and try cane.
Since his arrival in 1957, he has loyally read the Daily Mercury and tried never to miss an edition.
“It cost three pence. It was different in those days there were advertisements about horses, cattle and pigs,” he said.
“You could go around to a mate’s place, and it would be sitting on the table. If it got wet, he would stand over the oven drying it. Everyone in the family would read it.”
A popular section for many years was the lost, found, stolen or strayed.
“It was every day. Someone would mention if they had lost or found anything from losing a tinny to finding a stray horse,” he said.
Mr Andrews also remembers the popularity of the “hatches, matches and dispatches.”
“That was the births, engagements, marriages and the funeral notices,” he explained.
Apart from the must-read funeral notices, engagements were essential.
“Who is marrying who, who their parents were and sometimes when and what church,” he said.
Mr Andrews will remember the paper for its excellent coverage of the magistrate court, the road death toll and sport.
When asked about a memorable journalist, Mr Andrews mentioned Charlie Payne. Especially his dedication to promoting woodchopping.
Mr Andrews has witnessed many changes, from paperboys riding along with sides of papers, finding the newspaper being used as insulation in random places to the recent resizing of the paper.
“I thought the change was good. It was easier to handle,” Mr Andrews said.
He also sees the benefit of a digital format.
“My son lives in Melbourne and reads the Daily Mercury,” he said.
Although he is sad to see the printed paper stop, Mr Andrews will continue to support the Mercury in its new era.