Heartfelt thanks

Colleagues in Teesdale have received hundreds of thank you cards from customers

Colleagues in Teesdale have received hundreds of thank you cards from customers in tribute to all their hard work during the pandemic.

The cards were hand-delivered by Peter Smith – a local businessmen and brainchild of the ‘Barney Does It Best’ recognition campaign, which had thousands of thank you cards printed for key workers in Barnard Castle  – who wanted to find a way to thank residents, who had helped to keep the town going during the first lockdown.

Postie, Laura Bromwich, described the huge pile of thank you cards as overwhelming. ‘It’s lovely recognition,’ she said. ‘It has been one community working together.’

Trainee manager, Jamie Orpen, who is currently covering Barnard Castle while delivery office manager, Chris Walsh, is doing a coaching role, said it was great that the team were getting the recognition they deserved.

‘When I arrived in Barnard Castle in September, it was immediately obvious just how customer focused the team are,’ said Jamie. ‘Their work ethic is extraordinary. They just get on with it and take any challenges in their stride.

‘I honestly can’t praise them enough. I’d like to personally thank them for helping me develop. It was my first Christmas as a manager, and everyone here has been a dream to work with.’

Delivery office manager, Chris Walsh, added: ‘Jamie has summed up the attitudes of the team brilliantly. In a word, they are fantastic. They have worked relentlessly through the pandemic – 20 per cent of our workforce was absent due to shielding and sick leave at one point. At the time, we were lapsing two duties – in an office that has 15 – every day. But they all worked above and beyond to ensure we delivered for the customer.

‘The posties are a massive part of the community in Barnard Castle and for many of our customers, they were the only people they saw for long periods of time. The local community have been really supportive of our people as well as understanding of the many challenges we have faced.

‘To date, we haven’t had a positive test in the office. This is in part, due to how serious the team has taken this pandemic. We are fortunate to have a good-sized modern unit, and working with CWU health and safety rep, Peter Brenkley, area CWU health and safety rep, Chris Carse and CWU rep, Mark Scott, we came up with a plan to introduce one-way systems and minimise any risks to the team.

‘When I took over at Barnard Castle Delivery Office in January, none of us were expecting the challenges that Covid-19 has placed upon us. But thanks to the fantastic mentality of the office, I believe we’ve become stronger as a team and ready for any challenges that come our way. My sincere thanks go to everyone for their amazing efforts in delivering a brilliant customer service throughout the past few months, with such good humour and positivity.’

Photo by Teesdale Mercury.

7 Jan 2021