Post Office in Telford getting £40k facelift as new owner moves in
A post office will be given a £40,000 facelift when the new operator takes over the reins after saving it from closure.
Balvir Singh Randhawa will be taking over Madeley Post Office as part of an investment package including refurbishing the shop.
More than 1,500 residents supported an online petition to keep the branch over fears the community may lose the service, after the previous operator Martins (McColls) resigned.
Mr Randhawa will be running the shop and the postal service at the Russell Square site from May 22 and plans to continue the limited opening times while lockdown is in force.
The new enterprise will be known as Perfect Saver & Post Office.
"The previous owner was going to close the business. However, as I have got some experience on the post office side of things it seemed like a natural move and I decided to step in to keep it going and save the post office.
"It's a significant investment of £80,000 which includes the cost of refurbishing the premises with an internal refit and installing new fridges in the shop area.
"It's a big step and was hard work to get through the Post Office procedures including having a business plan, being interviewed and undergoing checks. My son has a business in the area and will be helping me.
"We're confident we can make a go of it and turn things round. Madeley is one of the biggest branches in the Telford area and an important community facility.
"We were initially hoping to have taken over already and hold an official event last month, but the Covid-19 situation changed all that," Mr Randhawa, 61, said.
Last year, town councillors unanimously backed a motion opposing the closure and a petition to save it was signed by thousands of residents, including an online page which attracted more than 1,500 names.
Madeley community worker June Campbell organised the internet petition: "Lots of people use the post office. It is always busy.
"The idea of losing the facility is dreadful for the town. Lots of older people use it and have no other means of doing their business. It's really good news that it's staying."
The sub post office was due to shut later this year if no suitable operator came forward.
Post Office spokesperson Sheila Tapster said: “We are delighted that Madeley Post Office will be reopening soon.
"We have an experienced and enthusiastic postmaster who will is working hard to reopen the branch as soon as possible. Details are being finalised.
"His son is a local retailer.”
The Madeley branch is not owned by Post Office Ltd, but the company had appealed for interested franchisees to come forward.
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