Lib Dems will consider Post Office plan

March 11, 2008 12:00 AM

Post Offices run by the Council could become a reality after senior Lib Dems gave their backing to a study into the scheme. Council Leader Alan Taylor will be asking the Council to investigate all costs involved and produce a study into the practicalities of such a service. This is in the light of a decision by Essex County Council to become the first local authority in the country to discuss taking over the running of post offices earmarked for closure.

This is in the same week that thousands of petitions from Rochdale were handed in by Paul Rowen to Parliament. The petitions were collected over a period of 3 months has been the single most popular campaign since the fight against cutting services at the Infirmary. Hundreds more are pouring into the Lib Dem HQ on a daily basis.

Councillor Alan Taylor said: "People value the service that our Post Offices provide and we'll do anything to retain this valuable service. We will be keeping a keen eye on developments in Essex and asking officers to draw up a study of associated costs and practicalities. This includes whether we can combine our Post Offices with delivering Council services."

Paul Rowen MP said: "We must be clear that our first priority is to protect our Post Offices in the first instance. That is why we launched our petition that has been hugely successful. It is not an ideal situation when we are looking to bale out the Government. That said - it is clear that our services, especially in rural areas like Wardle, Newhey and ones in Littleborough are under threat. I am pleased that our Council is considering the option of intervening. It is clear that we must investigate every avenue to retain a service that so many people rely on. We must not let the Government off the hook though. We are campaigning against their plans to axe 2500 Post Offices nationally - the sheer volume means that some in our town will inevitably be under threat."