A GENEROUS and kind man who helped to keep a Herefordshire community going during the Covid-19 pandemic has died, aged 69.

Andrew Summers and his wife Gerry managed Orleton Post Office since 1999.

Mr Summers used to run a ship chandlery business and his wife was a teaching assistant before they decided to become village shopkeepers.

They moved to the area from Essex after accepting the post office role.


“We were accepted really well and within four or five years felt like we belonged here,” said Mrs Summers.

Mr Summers was sub-postmaster while his wife worked in the post office.

In 2010 the couple doubled the size of Orleton Post Office by building back into the hillside.

This allowed the shop to change from hardly any self-service to the opposite.

The work included lowering the floor and raising the ceiling.

Despite the building work taking nine months, the shop was only closed for a total of two days.

Mrs Summers described her husband as a “generous and kind man”.

“I’ve been absolutely overwhelmed by how much people thought of him,” she said.

“If customers couldn’t get to the shop he would deliver to them.”

When the Covid-19 pandemic hit the couple provided a vital delivery service to the community.

“We did a massive amount of deliveries before Andrew became ill and he had been fighting cancer ever since.

“We saw an increase in people. There was baskets of food lined up in the shop.

“It was like a production line when Covid-19 first hit and we didn’t notice the signs of Andrew getting ill as he was very tired."

Mr Summers has two sons and two grandchildren. A service of thanksgiving will take place at Hereford Crematorium on Friday (March 11) at 3.15pm.

The funeral cortege will be driving through Orleton at around 2.15pm so villagers can pay their respects.