Shop Local: Support those serving the community new Wisbech postmistress urges

PUBLISHED: 10:48 27 October 2020 | UPDATED: 11:45 27 October 2020

Shop Local feature - Kerry Elkins, the new postmistress at Etcetera. Pictures: Ian Carter

Shop Local feature - Kerry Elkins, the new postmistress at Etcetera. Pictures: Ian Carter

Archant

Serving the community is important to Kerry Elkins, who recently became the new postmistress at the Post Office in Etcetera.

She said: “A lot of our customers need some form of face-to-face contact with someone.

“The elderly in particular don’t see many people during the week and they want the conversation.

“I think a short chat to a familiar face goes a long way, and someone at an independent business is much more likely to offer that.

She added: “That’s why services like the Post Office are still so important for communities.

Shop Local feature - Kerry Elkins, the new postmistress at Etcetera. Pictures: Ian CarterShop Local feature - Kerry Elkins, the new postmistress at Etcetera. Pictures: Ian Carter

“For example, there are people who don’t use the internet.

“Some don’t trust the internet for their banking or prefer to pay their bills how they’ve always paid their bills - and that’s where we can help.

“And we can have a little chat at the counter while we sort things out for them. It goes a long way.”

Kerry started her new postmistress role this autumn.

Shop Local feature - The Clarkson Memorial in Wisbech town centre. Pictures: Ian CarterShop Local feature - The Clarkson Memorial in Wisbech town centre. Pictures: Ian Carter

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Like Tracy Young, who is now running The Snack Shack at Etcetera, she was made redundant and discovered there was an opportunity at the store’s Post Office branch.

She had planned take six months out and spend the time with her family.

But as Kerry has nine years’ experience in running another Post Office branch, she decided it would be a good move and applied for the position.

Kerry said: “Customers do recognise Tracy and myself from our previous jobs in banking.

“You can see they’re trying to work out how they know us.

“But once they realise who we are, they’re so pleased to see us even if it is in a different setting.”

She added: “And I think people shop local is because they get to know you, they like the face-to-face interaction and that we serve the community.”

Ray Wicks, who owns Etcetera, said: “Kerry is such a lovely person and so good with customers.

“I know she’ll be an asset to the Post Office, and we found each other at the right time. In fact, the timing couldn’t have been more perfect.”

The Post Office is inside Etcetera, in York Row, Wisbech. From the shop’s York Row entrance, the branch is behind the giftware section and before The Snack Shack cafe. It is open Monday-Friday 9am-5:30pm and Saturday 9am-1pm.

•If you are an independent trader and would like to be featured in our Shop Local campaign, email louise.hepburn@archant.co.uk.


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