10 May 2023

Why I started the Cape York Weekly

| Matt Nicholls
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The decision to start up a newspaper in the midst of a global pandemic was an easy one.

Mostly because the decision was guided by the wishes of the community, rather than my own ambition.

A community without a newspaper is much less connected and loses its voice. So when I was approached by a number of Cape York residents to get a paper off the ground, I was more than happy to oblige.

The hardest decision was to move back to Weipa from Cairns. I must admit I love living in Cairns and being away from my beautiful partner will be difficult. It’s only been a couple of weeks and I miss her. Luckily there are daily flights between the two ports.

But I also love Weipa and the Western Cape. It’s a great place to live. There’s no traffic, great fishing, a golf course and a pub with cold beer. The sunsets are to die for and the people are genuine and wholesome.

We’ve got a number of Aboriginal communities in our circulation area and it’s important to me that they are well represented in the paper. Not for tokenism, but because their stories are important both locally and nationally.

Closing The Gap is about actions rather than words. A newspaper can highlight the inequalities in our communities and also shine a light on the positive achievements that will help change perceptions.

I’ve tried my hand at a number of jobs since I was last year made “redundant” by my former employer. None of them came close to the satisfaction of running a community newspaper.

That’s what Cape York Weekly will be. A local, community newspaper. Something that local residents can be proud of, be a part of, and look forward to getting each week.

Most importantly, we want to be a positive publication. While I won’t shy away from a negative story if it’s important to tell, the focus is going to be on positive pieces.

This is our home and we live here because we love it. Too many papers get bogged down on negative news.

Finally, I want to thank all the businesses that have supported the paper prior to the inaugural publication. It was quite humbling to see so many willing to advertise. We’re working to engage with the businesses as much as possible so they get more value for their advertising spend. Watch this space.

We’re only a couple of weeks away from our first edition, so hit the subscribe button on the home page and register to get the paper delivered to your email inbox for free each week. You’ll still be able to get the print version locally, but the digital edition will be available the night before the paper hits shelves.

Matt Nicholls
Cape York Weekly
0477 450 558
[email protected]

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