COOL FIND: Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating a home.
COOL FIND: Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating a home. Craig Warhurst

Renovations uncover a piece of Bundy history

THEY say a newspaper is good for wrapping up your fish and chips, but how about as sheeting in an old home?

That's exactly what Matthew Powell came across this week when he was helping pull down walls in a three-bedroom home on Windemere St.

Hidden behind the weatherboard panels in what used to be a sleep-out were old NewsMail press plates from the 1970s.

"I was stoked,” Matthew said of the find.

"I thought it was awesome. You always hear about people finding old things, but you never think it's going to be you.”

Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home.
Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home. Craig Warhurst

The butcher said he was amazed at the difference in the cost of goods from 40 years ago.

A hot cook was going for $1.45 at Dixie Foodhouse, while a click-front bra was $3.

"It's crazy how cheap everything was,” he said.

Matthew's dad Wayne Powell is a Bundaberg local and was amused to spot people he knew hidden in the old pages.

Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home.
Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home. Craig Warhurst

"Dad was going, 'I know him, I know him',” Matthew said.

Matthew said he hadn't decided yet what to do with the memorabilia, but wouldn't be throwing it out.

"I'm curious as to how many other houses in Bundy would have them lying around,” he said.

"I was thinking maybe back then they gave them away because you can only use it once.”

Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home.
Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home. Craig Warhurst

So far Matthew has uncovered six plates, dating from early November 1970, and he expects to find more.

Traditionally homes built in this era would forgo internal sheeting on sleep-out areas, leaving studs and noggings exposed.

But as internal sheeting became more popular in the '60s and '70s, many of these sleep-outs were lined using materials like fibro sheeting or Masonite.

Or, in the case around Bundy, old NewsMail press plates.

Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home.
Matthew Powell found these NewsMail printing plates while renovating his parent's Bundaberg home. Craig Warhurst


LETTERS: A thank you to the Bundy community

LETTERS: A thank you to the Bundy community

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