MP condems closure of five branch post offices

PUBLISHED: 10:00 19 August 2008 | UPDATED: 13:31 06 May 2010

MP for St Albans Anne Main has condemned the decision to confirm the closure of five post office branches in the St Albans district. The five are at Waverley Road, Prospect Road and Bernards Heath in St Albans itself, and also the branches at Smallford an

MP for St Albans Anne Main has condemned the decision to confirm the closure of five post office branches in the St Albans district.

The five are at Waverley Road, Prospect Road and Bernards Heath in St Albans itself, and also the branches at Smallford and Park Street and had been proposed for closure as part of Post Office Ltd's Network Change.

The announcement comes following a six-week consultation by the Post Office. There is no appeal process and the five branches will now be closed in one to three months.

Mrs Main said: "Yet again this feels like just another pointless lip-service consultation driven by Government-imposed targets. It was always clear that not all the post offices would be saved but I do think there were serious omissions in the appraisals, particularly for the Waverley Road and Prospect Road branches. I am extremely disappointed that, despite strong local opposition, a good business argument being made and high usage figures, these branches are being axed anyway.

"Having discussed the situation with local people, I put together a detailed submission to urge the Post Office to halt these closures, but it appears that this has been ignored, along with letters from hundreds of local people. Perversely, in other areas, post offices generating far fewer footfalls have been spared the chop. It appears that in our area there was always a set figure for closures regardless of how well-used branches are. This is madness and does not reflect the real situation on the ground.

"Only last month in Parliament, I firmly pointed out to the Secretary of State Hazel Blears that people routinely feel shut off from the political process by gimmicky schemes and pointless consultations and sadly this is just another example of this - it is obvious nobody is really listening. The only logical conclusion my constituents can draw from this is that these closures were a done deal from the outset.

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