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Post Office Closures - A Letter to George

November 27, 2003 12:00 AM

Cllr Ian Nimmo-Smith, the Lib Dem leader of the City Council handed a letter to George Hooper of Royal Mail at the public meeting last night.

Cllr Nimmo-Smith set Mr Hooper a series of questions that his ward constituents had posed. "We are not satisfied with the reasons given for closing our local post offices and we urgently need answers to these questions".

Here are the questions posed by Cllr Nimmo-Smith in his letter:

  • You are following a process on a parliamentary constituency basis. Have you yet looked at the adjacent constituency areas and do you have any proposals that will affect the the Cambridge City Council district?
  • Who is funding the compensation package for sub-postmasters who give up their franchises?
  • Has this compensation package received ministerial or parliamentary approval? If so, when and by whom?
  • What role have the compensation packages on offer played in coming up with these proposals?
  • Many people feel you have based your proposals on "soft targets", namely sub-postmasters who can be induced to go quietly.
  • Who sanctioned the "95% of the population within 1 mile" criterion? Has this criterion received ministerial or parliamentary approval? If so, when and by whom?
  • There are many members of the local community for whom a mile to travel represents an insuperable challenge. What support is there for this criterion from charities working for the elderly or disabled?
  • What consideration has been given to whether the post office branches under threat might be considered commercially viable by another franchisee with a more dynamic commercial approach, prepared to make an investment perhaps supported by one of the £10,000 grants?
  • What consideration has been given to the impact on the future viability of the local shopping centre at Mitcham's Corner?