Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson campaigns to protect serv

Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson receives the customers' postcards calling for services to be saved at Post Offices with Maghull Central Square sub-postmaster Robert Westoby.

Sefton Central Labour MP Bill Esterson has given his backing to a campaign to safeguard vital public services at community post offices throughout Sefton.

Post Office users from throughout Maghull, Aintree, Melling, Formby, Thornton and Crosby have sent postcards to Bill calling for the services to be saved.

Sub post masters throughout the North West fear that vital services such as tax disc renewals, identity checking and driving licences will all be outsourced threatening the long-term future of Post Offices in many of our communities.

Campaigners are calling on the government to ensure that Post Offices continue to offer driving licences, vehicle tax discs and other DVLA services.

They want MPs to write to the Transport Secretary Justine Greening to ask her to support the Post Office's bid to retain the DVLA contract, and also the Minister for the Cabinet Office Francis Maude to ask him to support the Post Office's efforts to win new government work.

Maghull Central Square Post Office sub post master Robert Westoby said: "The customers at the Central Square store are very concerned about the loss of Post Office services.

"In just a few days, we've had in excess of 100 people fill in the postcards to call for the government to back local Post Offices.

"Many people rely on their local Post Office, particularly some older people who don't have access to the internet and who cannot get some of their vital services anywhere else.

"Lots of people are getting concerned about this issue and that's why they are backing the campaign.

"I've been here at Central Square since 1996 and I have gotten to know lots of my customers very well. Lots of the people come in like to know they'll see a friendly face when they come through the door and know they can rely on any help they need. that#s one of the vital services we provide and what will be lost if the government allows Post Offices to lose their services and lose business."

Bill Esterson said he has been contacted by hundreds of concerned Post Office customers from throughout the constituency.

Bill said: "This is a big issue for lots of people who do rely on the Post Office. There's people who don't have access to the internet or who aren't comfortable doing business online who see the Post Office not just as a provider of vital services, but also as a lifeline.

"For many people, if some of these services are taken away from the Post Office, then people may have to travel to find alternative providers.

"To allow DVLA services to be contracted out to other provider will be the latest death knell for local Post Offices.

"On the one hand the government says it wants Post Offices to be the front counter for government services, but on the other they are taking away many of the services they provide on behalf of the government. The left hand clearly doesn't know what the right hand is doing.

"Post Offices are businesses, but they are more than that. In many cases they are the heart of a community. They are worth supporting and fighting for."