The fastest postie in the west retires

John Lawrence,retired running postman from Towcester.'111006M-A794
John Lawrence,retired running postman from Towcester.'111006M-A794

A POSTMAN who ran while making deliveries to villages in the Towcester area has hung up his running shoes after nearly four decades.

John Lawrence of Beech Close in Towcester began life as a postman in 1972. His delivery round initially included Weston and Lois Weedon, and Slapton, with Abthorpe added 15 years ago.

In appreciation of his service each village independently decided to have a whip round for his retirement and the 60-year-old said he now has enough for a ‘really good holiday.’

Mr Lawrence said he got some odd looks when he first started running up and down resident’s driveways, something he continued to his very last delivery.

He said: “It’s just habit really. I didn’t stop playing football until my 40s and played cricket into my 50s, so I’ve always been sporty. And in a village everything’s spaced out and there are some long drives so I just started running. And in those days if you got back early, and they were short staffed, you could get another half round on over time. Village life is different, you get to know people, and everyone knew me by my first name. Sometimes it didn’t feel like a job.”

Mr Lawrence said he now plans to spend more time running around after his wife, two children and three grandchildren.

Bob Carter, clerk to Abthorpe Parish Council said Mr Lawrence often went beyond the call of duty and will be difficult to replace.