Royal Mail springs surprise over future of Middle Brook Street site.
The ECHO have revealed that Winchester's Crown Post Office in Middle Brook Street, Winchester is to close.
Services will be transferred to WH Smith in the High Street as part of a national move by Royal Mail.
Conservative Parliamentary Candidate for Winchester, Steve Brine, has spoken to Royal Mail and they have confirmed that the move will go ahead. There will be a 6-week period of consultation but that will only be to ask local people what kind of service they want from a Crown Post Office in town and cover issues such as number of counters and opening hours.
Steve says; "Of all the Post Offices I expected to be worried about it was not Middle Brook Street. It is Winchester's central Post Office and because of that provides the full range of services not always available to customers at smaller sub-branches, which people will know are currently threatened by a closure programme themselves.
"This proposal will cause deep concern and I fear it will be seen as a further erosion of peoples' access to the Post Office network. I simply cannot see how we will have the same level of service in a relatively small branch of WH Smith. I just don't think it's feasible - all hell will break loose on pension day each week!
"Winchester demands a full size central post office offering the full range of services.
"I would challenge Royal Mail to do two things before any changes are made; say exactly what level of service provision it plans to make available when the move to WH Smith takes place here in Winchester and to promise there will be a genuine consultation with local groups such as those representing the elderly and the staff who will be affected."
What do you think of the plan? Send Steve your comments which will all be passed onto Royal Mail - firstname.lastname@example.org
Steve is pictured above with local campaigner for the city centre area, Abdul Kayum. They spent much of Friday afternoon outside the Middle Brook Street branch bringing the issue to the attention of Post Office customers.