Ruth Whybird from Eastern Heights has been reading The Queensland Times since 1937.
Ruth Whybird from Eastern Heights has been reading The Queensland Times since 1937. Claudia Baxter

Ruth is a lifelong subscriber

WHEN Ruth Whybird started reading the paper, it was still delivered by a boy with a hessian sugar sack.

The 95-year-old has obviously aged a bit since those days, but she still takes a keen interest in the daily goings on of her home town.

When the QT ran a story last week about who we thought was the longest-surviving QT subscriber, Phemie Biggs, Mrs Whybird was quick to make it known that she had been subscribing to the paper since February 1937 - almost 75 years, and 10 years longer than Mrs Biggs.

Mrs Whybird is proud to say that she reads the QT front to back - paying close attention to the section she calls the "hatches, matches and despatches" (births, deaths and marriages).

"I always read it to make sure I'm not dead yet," she laughed.

"In the early days I remember the paper boy coming around on his bike. He always made sure I had the paper in my hand.

"I think the price for the QT was either a penny or tuppence at that time. I had plenty of time to read it and I would read it front to back bar the racing guide."

Living in West Ipswich when she first married in 1937, Mrs Whybird moved to her home in Eastern Heights in about 1939.

She had four children with husband George, who was away for a few years in the early 1940s serving his country in WWII.

George passed away in the early 1980s.

Mrs Whybird kept company with quite a few of the partners of the mayors and local councillors through her younger days, and kept up with all the political news of the day.

"I have never been without the paper," she said. "I can't say I like all the modern changes, but to me it's still the QT and it's how I get all the local news."



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