Labour destroying Post Offices
Labour was accused yesterday of masterminding the "near certain death of the village post office."
In a bitter blow, it confirmed plans to close down 2,500 post offices over the next 18 months.
It is the numerical equivalent of shutting down every single branch of Tesco, Waitrose and B&Q combined.
By the end of next year, nearly 40 per cent of all post offices open when Labour came to power will have been axed.
In 1997, there were just over 19,000. By the end of this closure programme, there will be about 11,800.
The closures will be devastating for villages where the post office is often the last remaining shop.
More than half of post offices are in rural locations, typically contained within a newsagent or small food shop.
The main Government business which has gone is the payment of pensions, child benefit, the renewal of TV licences and the E111 health insurance documents.
Where pensions were previously collected at post offices, they are now paid directly into bank accounts.
Maybe it’s time to do something else with Post offices. Even if it isn’t profitable in rural communities we should keep them open. Community welfare will always be more important than profits.
I don’t know much about the issue but it seems to me that what is killing the Post Office is competition, especially from banks. There have been a lot of complaints about banks lately, about them conning customers and over charging them for different things. Why can’t the Post Office double as a bank? People will have more choice. The Post Office will give fairer deals and the banks will have to respond to this new competition by slashing their rates and becoming fairer. If not the Post Office would become the dominant bank especially if it had branches in rural communities where banks don’t generally locate. You then solve two problems with one solution.
Like I said I don’t know much about this issue. Does anyone have any criticisms?