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Popular postmaster thanks hundreds of customers with special delivery

PUBLISHED: 18:04 04 June 2020 | UPDATED: 18:04 04 June 2020

Manish Patel became postmaster for Shotley after his father retired in 2007. His father had served the village since 1995 Picture: POST OFFICE

Manish Patel became postmaster for Shotley after his father retired in 2007. His father had served the village since 1995 Picture: POST OFFICE

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A Suffolk village postmaster has marked 25 years of his family serving their community with a box of sweets delivered to hundreds of his loyal customers.

All of the homes in Shotley that received a box of sweets from the Patels also got a heartfelt note Picture: POST OFFICEAll of the homes in Shotley that received a box of sweets from the Patels also got a heartfelt note Picture: POST OFFICE

Manish Patel moved to Shotley in 1995 with his mother Kokila and father Chandrakant, as his father had become postmaster in the local shop and Post Office, Shotley Stores.

Mr Patel took over the family business in 2007 when his father stepped down and has been a staple of village life, organising annual charity fundraisers, ever since.

The postmaster, his wife Trupti and mother, who still helps out, had hoped to mark the 25th anniversary with a special event but, due to the coronavirus, has opted for a beautiful and personal gift box of Diwali sweets, delivered to all 1,100 homes in Shotley and Shotley Gate.

With the gift came an impassioned note from the family. It says: “The last three months have been difficult and trying times for all of us.

Shotley's postmaster, Manish Patel, with his wife Trupti and mother Kokila stand with Babergh District councillor Derek Davis.Tthe four delivered hundreds of boxes of sweets across the Suffolk village Picture: POST OFFICEShotley's postmaster, Manish Patel, with his wife Trupti and mother Kokila stand with Babergh District councillor Derek Davis.Tthe four delivered hundreds of boxes of sweets across the Suffolk village Picture: POST OFFICE

“During this time as your Postmaster, it has been humbling to see how all of you have risen to the challenges posed with good humour, kindness, patience and a quiet determination not to be beaten.

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“The way our young selflessly volunteer to help the elderly and vulnerable keep out of harm’s way and neighbours care for each other has filled me with enormous hope and confidence for the future.

“My family is proud to be a part of this wonderful community and it has been our pleasure and privilege to have had the opportunity to serve you for 25 years.

“We have enclosed a small gift not only to celebrate this important milestone for my family but also as a celebration (and reminder) of the fact that all of us, in our own small way are a precious part of a truly extraordinary community and that better days are ahead of us.

“God bless you and keep you and your family safe. Thank you Manish, Trupti and Mrs Patel (senior).”

Babergh district councillor Derek Davis, who helped Mr and Mrs Patel deliver the sweets, said: “We are very lucky to have Manish and Trupti running our shop and Post Office and their staff are great too.

“They are constantly benevolent – doing kind things for the community every Christmas and Easter.

“During the pandemic they have also organised deliveries for customers who could not get out. They are a fantastic couple.”


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