Paul Zeun is the kind of man everyone would like to have as their neighbour.
Paul, 53, of Sheffield, was nominated by his neighbour, Abby Wilson, 38, and chosen as the winner of a national competition, for his consistent caring and kind behaviour over the past decade.
He has now been crowned the UK’s best neighbour by Co-op Insurance and Neighbourhood Watch.
Traits of a good neighbour include looking out for each other, for example keeping an eye on the house, being sociable and friendly, and being helpful practically, by taking in parcels or similar.
Qualities of being kind, caring and respectful, and thinking about the impact they could have on neighbours are other positive attributes.
Abby Wilson first met Paul when she locked herself out of her flat 10 years ago and he helped her to get back in. They have been friends ever since.
In the years following, Paul helped her to redecorate her flat, and has taken her to A&E and picked her up from hospital. He also feeds her cats when she is away, takes in parcels and brings in the washing when it rains.
Paul has cared for terminally ill neighbours and looks after others by doing the shopping for those who can’t.
He shares his DIY skills and looks after people’s pets. He originally instigated and continues to organise communal themed BBQ’s and Christmas fancy-dress parties.
As a result of the get-togethers the neighbours now celebrate birthdays with one another.
He has been instrumental in getting the community talking to each other and bringing everyone together. Paul also plants flowers and from his allotment he shares out his vegetables, and the produce including jams and pickles with his neighbours every year.
Abby said: “Paul has done so much for me and the wider community and he is an extremely deserving winner of this award. A number of residents live alone, yet Paul makes sure they are never lonely.
“Paul’s kindness and generosity is always felt, even when he himself is in need or having difficult times.”
Paul said: “I’m totally overwhelmed to win this award. I enjoy helping people and getting everyone chatting. If we all did this, the world would be a much happier place.”