New boy on the block
Postman Ian Broad was born and bred on the streets of East London. However, having started at Leytonstone Delivery Office just as lockdown began, he’s still seeing the area in a whole new light.
‘I’ve worked for Royal Mail for 20 years,’ said Ian, as he delivered letters not far from the birthplace of Alfred Hitchcock, which is commemorated with a giant bird mural painted all over the building and pavement below.
‘I used to be based in Walthamstow and transferred to Leytonstone in March, just before everything closed down. I thought I knew the area inside out, but being a postman here, I’m finding I’m discovering new things all the time.’
Despite the change in circumstances, Ian said the move has been positive. ‘It’s been really good,’ he said. ‘Leytonstone Delivery Office is a lot smaller than Walthamstow, but there’s a strong sense of teamwork.’
Being the new boy on the block certainly hasn’t stopped Ian from getting to know his route inside out. ‘Because I’ve been a postman for so long, I can memorise the addresses on the parcels before I even head out,’ he said.
Customers have responded well to their new postman, too. ‘Everyone has been nice, saying thank you. And the kind notes on the doorsteps during lockdown were a welcoming touch.’
Ian has done various other jobs in his career. ‘I’ve worked in dog rescue centres, school kitchens, and some IT jobs,’ he said.
He finds his previous experience serves him well as a postman – his expertise with dogs, for example. ‘In all my years as a postman, I’ve never been bitten,’ he said.
Whatever Ian’s turned his hand to, he’s always keen to be out and about. ‘That’s the best thing about being a postman,’ he said. The worst thing? ‘The rain! I don’t mind the cold, but the rain is the worst!’