Clevedon postie brightens community and raises cash for children's charity
- Credit: Multiple contributors to calendar
A Clevedon postman who wore fancy dress to brighten up the gloom overshadowing people during the first lockdown is featured in a 2021 calendar – raising funds for the Royal Mail’s children’s charity.
Money raised will go to Action for Children, and the Royal Mail has pledged to match whatever funds are made selling the calendars.
Terry Barnes has worked in the same area of West End for the past 10-years, and was already a well-known figure in the area.
He then became an internet sensation, making new friends at home and abroad as a result of his exploits being widely shared on social media.
He started wearing an array of colourful character costumes lent to him by friends and customers in March; after a friend said it would cheer people up on his delivery rounds.
Terry said: “A friend suggested I dressed up in fancy dress to brighten a gloomy existence due to Covid-19.
“I thought it was a great idea, because I wanted to make people smile or laugh throughout that difficult period.
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“I obtained permission from my manager and wore a zebra onesie for a giggle.
“The response was amazing, from the very young, to the very old, people started waiting for me to arrive, cheering and clapping while I delivered their post.
“Even drivers tooted their horns as they passed in their cars.”
It was after the veteran postie of 30 years became a big hit on social media, with his pictures being shared around the globe; that it was suggested he should make a calendar with the pictures of him in the costumes.
He said: “Social media went into a frenzy with people taking photos and sharing.
"I was told I was popular in many countries around the world, including Europe, China and Canada - even down under in Australia.
“I've made some amazing friends, built fantastic relationships and feel a real part of the community.
“A few people suggested I made a 2021 calendar of my outfits, just a passing thought at the time.
“Several weeks ago, customer Pam Soper suggested again making a calendar, and organised it - and here we are today.”
Clevedon events organiser, Pam Soper, said: “Terry cheered us all up by wearing different costumes when delivering our post. It brightened our day and brought a smile to our faces.
“Although the calendar was not my original idea, I mulled over the possibility, then approached Terry to see if he was willing to go ahead with the it.
“With his and the Royal Mail's consent, we have now printed a 2021 calendar, using pictures of Terry in his various costumes; in aid of Action for Children - the Royal Mail's charity - they promised to match whatever funds we can make.”
During the second lockdown Pam has found it difficult to spread the word about the calendar and hopes to get support from readers of the North Somerset Times.
She said: “It was difficult to know which to choose as he wore different outfits everyday - he really was a star.
“I approached our local printers Pace, to help produce our calendar.
"They were so helpful and encouraging, I think they have come up with a superb item.
“Now all we have to do is sell it. Unfortunately, due to our second lockdown it became difficult to promote this fundraising calendar.
“This has been a new experience for me and I have found it challenging but fun.
"I hope we can do Terry justice for all the effort he has made to keep our spirits up.
“If anyone would like to thank Terry for putting a smile on our faces, please buy it now.”
The calendars cost £5, and can be purchased from Terry, or Pam, with all proceeds going to Action for Children.
Email Pam at firstname.lastname@example.org, or text or call her mobile on 07931 563632.