Solihull town centre post office earmarked for closure after 50 years - The Solihull Observer

Solihull town centre post office earmarked for closure after 50 years

Solihull Editorial 28th Nov, 2018 Updated: 28th Nov, 2018   0

A post office in Solihull town centre could be closed after 50 years and transferred to WH Smith.

The Mell Square post office’s possible relocation has been met with opposition from the Communication Workers Union.

It is on a list of 74 earmarked for closure across the UK – with many set to have services transferred to WH Smith.

The cutbacks mean the post office in Solihull could be relocated next year, prompting fears of job losses.

A public consultation will be held in the new year.

The Post Office’s national network and sales director Roger Gale said: “We know how much our customers rely on their local Post Office and understand the concerns they may have about these changes.

“I would like to reassure all our customers in Solihull that they will still be able to pick up their pensions, buy stamps, collect and return home shopping or access their usual high street bank account, in just the same way as they do at present.

“Indeed, there will be no changes to any of the services available over the counter at the Solihull branch.

“Additionally, the branch will be open longer, including on Sundays, making it more convenient for customers.”

He added the postal service is being forced to adapt as customer requirements for change and is not immune to the struggles of other high street retailers.

The cutbacks will secure the company’s long term future, he says.

He insists Post Office staff will also be supported through these changes.

Chair of Solihull and Meriden Labour Party Nick Stephens said: “If this story is true it is another blow for our town centre, which has lost the Magistrates Court and is likely to lose the police station due to government cuts.

“We fully support the union who are campaigning against this closure which threatens the jobs of their members.

“Solihull Post Office is still busy, despite the changes in the way we all communicate these days, and I just can’t imagine where the public will be able to be served in a part of WH Smith’s, especially at Christmas time in future years.

“This is another example of the failed privatisation of Royal Mail by the Conservative-led coalition government.”

Many post offices around the country are already being run by WH Smith staff.

Members of the Communication Workers Union (CWU) – which represents post office workers – will be gathering in the Royal British Legion Club, on Union Road, on December 7, to discuss their campaign.

Labour MP for Erdington, Jack Dromey, and the Trades Union Congress Midlands chief Lee Barron are expected to address the crowd.

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