Long walk ahead for pensioners

ELDERLY people could be left with a long walk to collect their pensions if their local post office branch closes, the Evening Star can reveal today.With the news that four Ipswich post offices could be facing the axe we sent teenager Victoria Gallagher out to the under-threat Wherstead Road branch and asked her to find her way to the closest alternative post office in Fore Street.

ELDERLY people could be left with a long walk to collect their pensions if their local post office branch closes, the Evening Star can reveal today.

With the news that four Ipswich post offices could be facing the axe we sent teenager Victoria Gallagher out to the under-threat Wherstead Road branch and asked her to find her way to the closest alternative post office in Fore Street.

Her walk to the Fore Street branch took around 15 minutes, and she is an able-bodied young woman - a worrying amount of time for many of the regular users of the Wherstead Road branch who are likely to be older and less mobile.

Many older people could be facing a round-trip of many minutes to collect a pension or benefits.


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Patricia Frost regularly calls at the Wherstead Road branch to collect her elderly mother's pension. She said: "I think it's terrible. There are so many people in that area who are not as fortunate as my mother and don't have anyone to collect their pensions for them.

"Many of them can only manage short trips out and the prospect of an hour's walk is appalling.

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"They're just not capable of getting down there or getting on a bus in to town.

"I would like whoever's made this decision to come and see them and then try and explain why it is necessary."

As reported in last week's Star, regular customers at the Wherstead Road branch are outraged at the prospect of the closure and have rallied around to launch a petition to save it.

N What do you think of the proposed Post Office closures? Write in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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