A POST Office branch in Skegness must not proceed with its threatened closure before a ‘comparable branch is ready to open’, the town council insists.
Following a recent announcement that the Co-operative store in the Hildreds Centre doesn’t intend to continue operating its Post Office service from December, councillors have agreed to request for alternative provision to be assured before its closure occurs.
Speaking at Skegness Town Council’s latest meeting on Wednesday, Coun Steve O’Dare said: “I would like to see the town council write to the Post Office on behalf of our community and put across our strong feelings that this doesn’t happen because we can’t afford to lose our main Post Office.”
Coun O’Dare said the Post Office’s headquarters had told him it would do its ‘utmost to ensure the Post Office branch can be relocated’ and would create a ‘temporary’ branch if it faced problems finding a permanent home.
However the Mayor of Skegness Coun Steve Kirk said that ‘anything temporary strikes fear in me’ and agreed that pressure should be applied to prevent branch closures which ‘for many are a lifeline.’
Coun Phil Kemp shared Coun O’Dare’s belief that the council should lobby for a replacement branch and raised a more strongly worded motion, insisting to the Post Office that a comparable branch ‘offering the same level of services and ease of access’ is provided.
Councillors voted in favour of Coun Kemp’s strengthened motion, although Coun Mark Anderson feared it may be a difficult campaign to fight.
He said: “We’ve been through a lot of battles about retaining services and those of us who have been through those battles have the scars to show for it and know how hard it can be.”
As the Post Office branch in the Hildreds is operated by the Co-operative as a franchise it was decided that the town clerk Steve Larner should address the council’s request to both companies.
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