Shropshire Star

'They've lost every service that was in the village': Residents ask Post Office to retain outreach

Villagers have called for the Post Office to reconsider the closure of their outreach service.

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The much-valued service at Marton finished yesterday, with residents only informed about the end of the outreach at the village hall a week before.

Shropshire Councillor, Heather Kidd, joined residents at the final session, and called on the Post Office to re-think its decision.

She said: "The Post Office have decided to remove any service to the village.

"At one time they had a full-time post office, then they had a post office that was available at the end of the week at lunchtimes.

"Then when the shop closed it came here to the village hall at 9.30am on a Monday and they have decided it is not viable and they have removed it."

Residents have called on the Post Office to rethink its closure of the outreach service to Marton

She added: "The poster for that arrived last week and they are shutting it today."

Councillor Kidd said that the situation would now see elderly residents having to travel to Chirbury or Worthen to access postal services – with limited public transport making it difficult and inconvenient.

She said the situation was another example of rural areas losing services.

She said: "It is older people that use it and I think the real distressing thing is they have now lost every service that was in the village. They have lost the shop, they have lost the Sun Inn, the school closed a few years ago, so the village hall here is about the only meeting place.

"The Post Office meant people could gather here, and what they really want is the Post Office to give them another six months to a year where they could do a drop-in at a lunch time where people could bring their parcels so you get a younger age group coming in as well."

Announcing the closure, a Post Office spokesman said: “Following a review of customer usage over the past few years there are changes to outreach Post Office services provided by the postmaster for Pontesbury.

"Due to very low customer usage, we regret that the outreach services provided at Marton, Longden, Stiperstones and Wentnor will cease. We are aware of the petition to try to keep Marton Post Office open.

“In a very challenging economic climate Post Office has undertaken a comprehensive review of the network at a very detailed, local level, analysing customer demand and accessibility of Post Office products and services.

"Consequently, it has informed our plans for the Post Office network to ensure our finite funding and resources are allocated to deliver maximum benefit for all customers."

The final session at Longden will take place on Thursday, while the Stiperstones service at Snailbeach and the Wentnor service will finish on Monday, May 27.