Campaign to deliver new town Post Office
Town and District Councillors Robert Oates and David Suiter collected 240 signatures in two hours on Saturday morning to illustrate the strength of the campaign to reinstate full-time services since the main Post Office closed on Southgate in February, when the lease on the premises expired and the postmaster stepped down.
Member for Holdingham Ward, Coun Oates said: “I organised the petition because I feel that the Post Office has been complacent about the closure of the town centre branch.
“People in the town have known for months that the central Post Office was closing, so the Post Office must also have known about it. Yet they did not act soon enough to find a replacement, meaning that we are without Post Office services all week in the town centre, apart from Saturday morning.”
A temporary mobile Post Office has been set up in Riverside Precinct on Saturday mornings and customers are also directed to outlying branches.
Coun Oates went on: “Many who signed the petition were frustrated at the inadequacy of a Saturday morning only service. Many people without cars such as the elderly or less mobile were not able to get to alternative branches like Woodside during the week.”
They also gained the support of high street businesses who rely on the Post Office.
He said: “I will be sending the petition to Ian Johnson, the Post Office Change Manager as an indication of the strength of feeling in the town, as to how this change has not been well managed.”
He and Coun Suiter plan to repeat the petition each Saturday morning until an official announcement is made about a replacement full-time branch with a full range of services.
A motion was also tabled at North Kesteven District Council last week levelling the same concerns and calling for a speedy reinstatement.
A Post Office spokesperson, said: “We are working hard to re-open a full-time Post Office as soon as possible.
“As an alternative temporary solution, we are also exploring the possibility of a pop-up Post Office to increase Post Office service to the town centre as we know how important Post Office services are to the community.
“We are also progressing with plans to re-open a permanent branch in an empty shop in central Sleaford.”