Public meeting over post office closures

A PUBLIC meeting is being held tomorrow after more than 1,800 people signed a petition against the closure of post offices in Ipswich.

By MICHAEL EMONS, EAST IPSWICH REPORTER>

A PUBLIC meeting is being held tomorrow after more than 1,800 people signed a petition against the closure of post offices in Ipswich.

As revealed in the Evening Star on February 19, the Post Office plans to close its branches at Barrack Corner, Felixstowe Road, Ruskin Road, Spring Road and Austin Street.

Tomorrow's meeting starts at 7pm at the Clifford Road Primary School and residents will be able to quiz George Hooper, the head of the Post Office's eastern region commercial operation.


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It promises to be a lively debate as there is strong opposition to the proposals.

Rex Chittock, 71, and Eric Chisnall, 72, went round a number of streets in east Ipswich with a petition campaigning about the closure of the Felixstowe Road, Ruskin Road and Spring Road branches.

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They collected more than 1,200 signatures after knocking on people's doors from Grove Lane to Foxhall Road and by leaving further petitions in shops.

More than four sides of A4 had been filled with people's signatures after a petition had been left in the Co-op in Foxhall Road for two days.

Mr Chittock said: "There is a hell of a lot of strong feeling in this area. If the Post Office people had seen the state of some of these residents who will have to go another 1.6 miles up the road, they would not believe it.

"We understand if a shop is not making a profit then something has to be done but they must remember the people that are distraught.

"I hope the meeting is absolutely packed and there is not enough room for everybody. I am sure it will be a good evening.

Ipswich's Conservative parliamentary candidate Paul West called the meeting and he thinks people need to voice their opinions.

He said: "Since the news of the planned closures was announced our postbags have been full and our telephone lines red hot.

"For the sake of openness and proper debate we thought that the public should have a chance to hear things first hand from a top Post Office representative.

"We have chosen a venue in the heart of east Ipswich as that is the area worst hit by the closure plan. However, everyone from across the town is invited and encouraged to attend.

"A big turn out will ensure that maximum pressure can be exerted on the powers that be."

On Saturday The Evening Star reported that a separate petition against the closure of Barrack Corner post office had collected more than 600 signatures.

N Are you affected by the proposed post office closures? Tell us what you think by writing in to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or send us an e-mail to eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk or visit the forum at www.eveningstar.co.uk

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