Keep using your post office

POST office customers are putting their support behind The Hunts Post campaign to protect post offices across Huntingdonshire. Launched two weeks ago, the campaign aims to help prevent our post offices from closure as the Government plans to axe 2,500 bra

POST office customers are putting their support behind The Hunts Post campaign to protect post offices across Huntingdonshire.

Launched two weeks ago, the campaign aims to help prevent our post offices from closure as the Government plans to axe 2,500 branches across the country.

Cambridgeshire will find out in the summer where that axe will fall in our area. The more profitable the post office, the more likely it is to be saved so it is vital that people use their village and small town post offices this Christmas to buy their stamps and post their parcels.

Hemingford Grey parish councillor, Peggy Seamark, pictured, a warden at the Norris Museum in St Ives, has been fighting to save her local post office in the town for several years.

It has moved locations several times, having once been in The Post Office building in Bridge Street.

Mrs Seamark, 70, said: "I refused to have my pension paid into my bank account when the Government stopped issuing pension books. I get a Giro so that I can still go into the post office to get my cash.

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"A couple of weeks ago, I had two Giros which I had saved and there was a new man behind the counter. He looked a bit dubious so he handed them over to an old hand member of staff and she laughed and said. 'It's all right, if it weren't for Peggy, you wouldn't have a job."

Mrs Seamark's home in Victoria Terrace, St Ives, is about a mile from her local post office in Market Hill where it is combined with newsagents as St Ives News and Post Office.

She said: "There is no way I would let the post office close. I go there every week. I will buy my Christmas stamps there and post my parcels. I pay my bills there. It is a vital part of the community."

After warnings from police about card cloning at cash machines in the street and outside major supermarkets, The Hunts Post is reminding readers that you can withdraw cash from High Street bank accounts at any post office - completely free of charge. The Post Office also has tax-free savings schemes and can be used to pay household bills.

The message of The Hunts Post Protect Your Post Office campaign is simple: Use it or Lose it. The criteria being used by Post Office Limited when deciding which post offices to close and which to keep are to look at the finances of the branch as well as how far away it is from the next post office. There are fears that it may not take into account how easy or difficult it is to travel there for people without their own transport in rural areas. There will be a consultation period during the review process but once a decision has been made it will not be reversed, Post Office Limited says.

ACT NOW: The Hunts Post wants to emphasise the community role that village post offices play. This is why we want readers to log on to www.huntspost24.co.uk and add their names to the petition asking for a community element to be included in the review.

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