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Saturday, 23 May 2015

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Artist Percy Kelly remembered with post office plaque

Great Broughton Post Office has unveiled a plaque commemorating its most famous sub postmaster – artist Percy Kelly.

The West Cumbrian-born artist worked there from 1952 for six years, in the Main Street building which has been the post office for more than 100 years.

Carol Comloquoy-Spence, current postmistress, said: “There are one or two people who can still remember him. My mum can remember him. Whenever she came in he was always painting at his easel.

“It’s nice to have a plaque put up in his memory.”

Mrs Comloquoy-Spence’s mother, Jean Stamper, still lives in the village.

The parish council paid for the plaque, which was unveiled on Tuesday by Comloquoy-Spence, parish councillor John Wilson and council chairman Sue Hannah.

Mrs Hannah said: “We wanted to have something in recognition of someone famous in the village.”

Arnold Byers, 69, of Main Street, said: “I went to Broughton School with his son. I remember Percy Kelly serving in the post office, behind a big long counter. He was very serious looking.”

Kelly had been involved with the post office since 1932, when he was 14 and won a national handwriting competition organised by Royal Mail. For the next seven years he worked as a telegraph messenger in Kendal and Workington.

In 1946 he resumed work for the Post Office in Workington before going to Great Broughton.

A plaque has been put up at the site of Workington’s former post office on the corner of Murray Road and Finkle Street.

In 1958 he gave up the post office and moved to Allonby. Three years later he started studying at Cumbria College of Art.

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