PEOPLE in Ludlow have come together to try to stop a popular delivery driver from being moved from the town.

Residents have appealed to DPD bosses in a bid to get them to keep a driver on a local route after he was told he would have to relocate.

Over 1,000 people have joined the Facebook group, ‘SAVE OUR DPD PAUL’ where members have been sharing their praises for delivery driver Paul Pugh.

Emma Kennet, who created the group, said: “He is a big part of our community in Ludlow, everyone knows him and I think it will be awful if we haven’t got him around.”

She added that he was gobsmacked and overwhelmed after showing him the posts and comments made on the social media site.

Users have been encouraged to put pressure on the delivery company by sending emails and signing a petition in support of keeping Mr Pugh on the route surrounding the local area.

‘DPD Paul’ has been delivering parcels to residents in Ludlow for seven years and has been dubbed a ‘Ludlow Legend’ by many members of the group who say that the town would be worse off without him.

Sally Newman-Kidd posted: “Paul knows the area well and its inhabitants, anyone new is going to have to learn all that and, until they do, will waste lots of time and be inefficient.”

Andy Boddington, Shropshire councillor for Ludlow North is encouraging people to join the campaign to save the popular driver.

“Seven years ago, who would have thought that we would see so many couriers everywhere delivering in vans and cars,” said Mr Boddington.

“But online shopping has grown. Especially this year when so many of us have been in one lockdown after another.

“Many of us have got to know Paul Pugh, the cheery delivery man in the red DPD van. Despite his intimate knowledge of our town and friendly service, DPD plans to move him to a round in Birmingham early next year. He is not happy and neither are we.

“It takes a lot to get to know Ludlow, especially the historic town centre with many of its houses and apartments tucked away down alleys, behind each other and above shops. Couriers have been known to give up looking for some of the harder to find locations. It takes time to deliver too. Some couriers have held over deliveries to the next day because they have underestimated the time needed to deliver around our town or even to get to it.”

A spokesperson for DPD has said: “We know Paul is very popular with his customers and recognise that people get to know their DPD driver very well.

“We always do everything we can to minimise driver moves, but it is sometimes unavoidable, unfortunately.”

DPD is currently the largest express parcel delivery company in the UK and is experiencing an ‘unprecedented period of growth’, meaning that driver’s routes are often changed to fit the growing demand.