County to fight for post offices

COUNTY chiefs are exploring ways of protecting the post office network for the people of Suffolk.Across the UK around 2,500 post offices - a fifth of those left in the UK - will have to close by 2009 to make the service viable.

COUNTY chiefs are exploring ways of protecting the post office network for the people of Suffolk.

Across the UK around 2,500 post offices - a fifth of those left in the UK - will have to close by 2009 to make the service viable.

Around a million less people a week than two years ago use the service and Government reckons the current network is unsustainable.

A six-week consultation in to the shake-up is due to begin on October 8, allowing people in the county to make their views known.

It is expected a decision on which post offices will go will be made by mid-December.

Suffolk County Council has pledged to attempt to protect the service.

Most Read

Councillor Jeremy Pembroke, Leader of Suffolk County Council said: “Post offices, especially those linked to a local shop, are part of the fabric of local communities providing access to basic essentials.

“In many cases the local post office provides an important social, community and economic function and we need to work together to protect them against the continuing trend of closures, especially in deprived urban and isolated rural areas".

“I was pleased to have the backing of the cabinet to take this important work forward, and with the support of the local business community and the voluntary sector I am confident that we will continue to work together with other stakeholders to examine all the options and hopefully make a positive contribution to protect the services that the post office provides for everyone."

The strategy developed by a panel set up by Suffolk County Council outlines a series of practical steps that can be taken to improve the viability of Suffolk's post office network and reduce the impact of closures on rural and urban areas communities.

The panel is focussing its support on post offices that have the potential to be sustainable as well as empowering urban and rural communities to develop their own solutions to improving social and community cohesion.

Would you miss your community post office if it were closed? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter