Maghull Labour MP Bill Esterson writes to the Post Office to rai

Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson with Maghull & Lydiate Labour Action Teams' Cllr June Burns, Cllr Lynn Gatherer, Rob Owens and Cllr Patrick McKinley.

 

Maghull’s Labour MP Bill Esterson is writing to the Post Office to express his concerns about plans to close Deyes Lane Post Office and replace it with one in Moss Lane.

This follows a steady flow of objections from residents who have contacted Bill since the Post Office announced the move last week.

Residents have pointed out that many people do not drive so would struggle to get from Deyes Lane to the new post office, which is set to be in Singh News next to the off licence. Others have pointed out the effect that the closure would have on other shop keepers in Deyes Lane as people who visit the post office will be less likely to shop at Deyes Lane following the closure. 

Residents also pointed out that the post office is at the centre of the community and provides a valuable service.

The MP said the closure was the flip side of the privatisation of Royal Mail. 

Royal Mail which delivers letters and parcels was making a healthy profit until it was sold off by Lib Dem minister Vince Cable earlier this month at a knock down price. However, the Post Office was losing money and is therefore looking to cut costs in any way it can.

Bill said: "I have been contacted by a number of residents following the article in The Champion and nearly everyone has been against the closure. 

"People are worried about the loss of a vital service as for many older people the post office is more than just a place to buy a stamp. It is at the heart of the community and it offers a vital public service. 

"When the Royal Mail was sold off cheap by Lib Dem minister Vince Cable, it made it more likely that post offices would close or move because the post offices lose money. But this overlooks the fact that the delivery service run by the Royal Mail made money, lots of it, and it overlooks the important role that the post office plays at the heart of our community. People visit the post office and then shop at the other shops nearby. This closure will hit other retailers hard. We know this because that is what has happened across the country when post offices have closed.

"Residents who have contacted me have expressed their concerns about the difficulties in getting from Deyes Lane to the other end of Moss Lane. I can’t see how people will wait for a bus after going to the post office in Moss Lane to go to shop at Deyes Lane yet this is what the Post Office has suggested will happen. It is not realistic.

"Then there is the impact on Moss Lane. Some people have pointed out that this will mean an increase in parking and an extension of opening hours. The shop in Moss Lane is opposite Northway Primary School and parents have raised concern about the impact of the increase in traffic and parking that this might call. And residents in Moss Lane were told that the off licence would not open late. Now the Post Office is proposing to open from 6am to 9pm, which raises the prospect of attracting anti-social behaviour to the off-licence part of the business.

"The concerns raised at both the loss of the Deyes Lane Post Office and at the impact of the new store in Moss Lane all need to be considered by Post Office Ltd. 

"I am sure that residents recognise the need for the post office to do as well as it can. But the government should also recognise that this is a vital public service and a lifeline for many people. 

"The concerns raised by residents are very similar to those raised by the Sub Postmasters and Postmistresses association who recognise that post offices are a key part of their local communities. 

"I fear that what the Lib Dems have done by privatising the profitable part of our postal service is to undermine the service completely and customers of the Deyes Lane Post Office are just the latest to suffer as a result of this government standing up for the hedge funds who profited from the Royal Mail while ignoring the needs of ordinary people."

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