by Kristen Booth
STUART and Penny Taylor have been major distributors of news in Emerald, with 31 years of experience in local newsagencies, experiencing the hardships faced by locals.
Mrs Taylor grew up in Gindie and Mr Taylor moved from Christchurch, New Zealand, more than 40years ago.
Together they purchased the newsagency section of Mortons Emerald Pharmacy and Newsagency in June 1987, making the transition to what is now Nogoa News, before purchasing their second newsagency, Emerald Plaza News, in 2005.
Since working in Emerald, Mrs Taylor said one story they would never forget was the 2010-2011 flood, "which impacted the town so closely following the 2008 flood”.
"Personally, memories we will always have is having to rebuild our shop at the Plaza at Emerald Shopping Centre following six months of no trade from that shop,” she said.
"But through perseverance and the support of the community, we have managed to survive and continue to support the community back.”
Mrs Taylor believes it's important to have a local newspaper "as it tells the lives of the people living in the community”.
"Local papers help the community in so many social ways, informing the locals of important changes, local community projects and developments, and most importantly helping develop and maintain community pride and affirming that everyone has a valued place in the community despite their backgrounds,” MrsTaylor said.
Peter and Sally Murphy, the owners of newsXpress Emerald and newsXpress Central Highlands, agreed the 2008 and 2010-2011 floods brought the most devastating news stories.
However, Mr Murphy said during their time in Emerald since 2002, they had also seen so much joy.
"Other memorable highlights include the division one Powerball winner and more recently the division one Set for Life winner that we sold, plus several large Instant Scratch It prizes,” MrMurphy said.
"It is unbelievable to see the excitement in customers once they realise their wildest dream has come true.”
Since serving the community, Mr Murphy said he found that while delivering international, national, regional and local news, "many of our customers cannot do without their local paper, just in case they miss something”.