Claverley Postmistress, Kay White, is the UK’s oldest Postmaster and today celebrates her 93rd birthday.
Post Office Area Manager, Adam Shillcock, visited the branch on Friday to mark Kay’s birthday with some presents.
It was also a belated celebration to mark Kay’s achievement of 60 years in charge of her Shropshire Post Office in person. On the actual diamond anniversary, Kay and Ann were shielding from the pandemic, following Government advice. The Post Office sent Kay a bouquet of flowers to mark the occasion and phoned her on the actual day to thank Kay for her loyal and dedicated service.
Kay and Ann chose to re-open their Post Office at the start of June as they were missing their customers and they wanted to restore their vital Post Office services to the community.
The Post Office Area Manager’s visit was also an opportunity to present Kay with her amazing 60 years’ Long Service Award as the company that makes these awards had furloughed their staff during the lockdown.
If 60 years’ service as Postmistress is not amazing enough, Kay has actually worked at Claverley Post Office since she was 14, when she left Claverley Church of England School – a total of 78 years.
Nick Read, Post Office Chief Executive, said: “I want to congratulate 92-year-old Kay White, our oldest Postmaster for achieving 60 years as Postmisress for Claverley. What a remarkable achievement. Kay and her niece, Ann, who run the Post Office are much loved and appreciated by the village and by myself and colleagues in our area team, who are amazed and impressed by Kay who is still enjoying serving customers.”
Adam Shillcock was also able to let Kay know that he has nominated her as a Local Hero in the Post Office’s ‘We’re Stronger Together’ regional awards next week which will recognise the efforts made by postmasters across the region to keep branches open during the Covid-19 pandemic and serving their local community.
Adam said: “I have nominated Kay for special Covid-19 service recognition as although the branch was closed due to pandemic in its early stages it reopened its doors on the 1 June much to the delight of the local community. During this period of lockdown Kay completed 60 years as Postmistress of her branch – This is un-equalled in the network and is a truly remarkable achievement.
“Kay’s commitment to support her community has seen her rack up 78 years working at the branch in Claverley and 60 years’ as the Postmistress. A truly phenomenal feat, she is supported fantastically also by her niece Ann who in turn has completed 28 years there also. Both were chomping at the bit to get the branch back and open and serving their community. They are not only unique in the area but across the whole network. The word resilience is often used, but in this instance it’s unparalleled and as their Area Manager I am deeply proud to work with them.
“Kay sets the network standard in demonstrating her commitment to her community and its people. Kay has undertaken many different roles within her community whilst enabling Post Office services for Claverley for 78 years.”
Postmistress Kay White, said: “Claverley is a beautiful village. I have loved my life here and have never wanted to move anywhere else. It is such a shame that the coronavirus pandemic stopped me from working on my 60th anniversary and doing what I thoroughly enjoy doing – serving the community and keeping in touch with the villagers. It is great to be back at work.”
In 2010 Kay was awarded an MBE in the New Year Honours for her services to the community. As well as being busy as the village Postmaster, Kay spent 38 years spent on the Parish Council, ran the Sunday school at All Saints Church for more than 20 years and founded the local Women’s Institute.