It only takes two minutes

Stafford colleagues go above and beyond to help a young man in distress

Lee Gilbert and Rob Harvey have been praised for going above and beyond to help a young man in distress, writes Zoe Walker.

The Stafford Delivery Office duo helped save the life of a young man who had climbed onto a bridge near their unit with confused intentions.

‘I was on my way into work and I was driving over the bridge at near enough 1am when I noticed something in my peripheral vision,’ says postie Rob.

On closer look, that something turned out to be someone.

‘I went into work and said to Lee: “we need to do something,”’ adds Rob. ‘So we went up and asked his name, what happened, talked to him and reassured him, called the police and they were there in about 10 minutes.’

‘I went in and got him a hot chocolate while Rob stayed up there with him,’ says Lee. ‘It’s not the sort of thing that usually happens at work – and it really brings it home how low many people are feeling at the moment.

‘What struck me was how young the lad is. It hit home as my son is slightly younger. I didn't realise that youngsters were having those kind of thoughts.’

The police took care of the young man and praised Lee and Rob for their help.

‘Afterwards Lee and I went and we got a coffee,’ says Rob. ‘We talked about what happened and got our heads around it.

‘It was below freezing at 1am. Me and Lee were talking about it, and we think it is really important to put the message out there that there is always someone out there that will talk to you – no matter what. It only needs just two minutes out of your day.

‘It seems to get more dark and miserable at this time of year, and people are really feeling it with Covid-19.  

‘The good thing about being a postie is that there are always people willing to have a chat.

‘On my rounds there are many people – especially the elderly – who have not been outside for many months.

‘I am lucky in the job I do that I am exercising and get fresh air. I can’t complain!

‘Dealing with a situation like this? It’s a tough one. I would not have forgiven myself if I had not done anything. I would just say – do what you can.’

Support services are available for those who need it

  • First Class Support is free and confidential for colleagues and includes direct access to counselling services. Call 0345 266 5060, visit www.rmgfirstclasssupport.co.uk or download the ‘Lifeworks’ app. New users of the website/app can ‘sign up’ using a unique invitation code, which is RMG- and then your payroll number, e.g. RMG-12345678.
  • Shout Mental Health Text Service: Free and available 24/7 - text Shout to 85258 in the UK.
  • For urgent support in a crisis: call the Samaritans on 116 123 (open 24/7) or in the case of a suicide or other emergency situation, ring 999, or 9999 from a Royal Mail landline.
29 Jan 2021