Family celebrates Betty's birthday with a lunch at Cleveland

CLEVELAND resident Betty Jones has just celebrated her 90th birthday, with a special double celebration.

COUSINS MEET: Betty Jones, centre, with some of her many cousins. They are celebrating Betty's 90th birthday at the Cleveland RSL. The cousins have held regular lunches for 40 years.

COUSINS MEET: Betty Jones, centre, with some of her many cousins. They are celebrating Betty's 90th birthday at the Cleveland RSL. The cousins have held regular lunches for 40 years.

The birthday function included a reunion with some of her cousins.

“Cousins lunches” have been a tradition for the Sibley family offspring for more than 40 years, with the social occasion strong supported by Betty.

The family lunches started in 1978.

The original gatherings included four other cousins – June McLoud, Pat Beckmann, Esme Donald and Gwen Hill – who have since passed away.

These women are all descendants of the Sibley family.

Ms Jones said she had since cast her net wider by including sisters and daughters who had since carried on the tradition of meeting each month.

“Family was important to them all,” Ms Jones said.

The Sibleys were one of the early white families to settle in the Wynnum district.

Betty is the eldest living of the 35 grandchildren of Wynnum pioneers Hedley Francis and Beatrice Mary Sibley.