I found Alex Story’s article relating to Ossett Post Office (Politically Speaking, January 27) very condescending.
Despite his statement there is nothing to warrant a petition, how wrong he is. There was an overwhelming number of people who were willing to sign the petition despite it being a cold wet Saturday morning, business owners in the town also requested blank petition forms for their customers to sign, because they could also see the long term detrimental effect the closure would have on the town.
And yes, they were all aware that there could still be some form of post office services available in Ossett if they close the actual Post Office, but they don’t want any reduction in services available, or see any of staff been made redundant. When the general Post Office in Wakefield closed and moved to W H Smith’s they removed the digital service and reassured customers that this service would continue to be available at the Ossett Post Office. When the Yorkshire Bank announced it was closing its Ossett Branch they wrote to all account holders, advising them they would still be able to access their accounts via the Ossett Post Office.
On a recent visit to the Post Office I witnessed an elderly gentleman who needed the help of a walking frame, who wanted to make an appointment to discuss his financial affairs that he had with the Post Office. They were able to meet his need and arrange for him to attend a meeting that would be held in private, if the Post Office is moved into a shop premises via a franchise, this service would no longer be available along with the digital service. Also, will there be the same level of accessibility for the elderly and disabled as at present?
If the Post Office is closed what will happen to the building? Look how long the old Blockbusters shop remained empty, look around at the empty buildings that already exist, the last thing Ossett needs is the further loss of facilities. We will be down to just one bank in the town once the Yorkshire Banks closes its branch.
Contrary to what Alex Story said, the public of Ossett are not prepared to wait until the Conservatives say it is okay to campaign, they want to see preventative action now. They will not wait until it’s all sorted and a so-called consultation is being held. We saw this procedure had no effect on the outcome with the Wakefield Post Office, despite the great amount of opposition there was.
Paul Jowitt, Ossett and Gawthorpe Labour Branch Secretary