Wednesday, 7 May 2008

Five Hammersmith and Fulham Post Offices Saved

Andy Slaughter MP (Lab) and Murad Qureshi AM (Lab) were celebrating the news that five Post Offices threatened with closure serving residents in the London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham will now stay open. In an extraordinary turnaround, Post Office Limited have reprieved the offices at Starch Green, Shepherds Bush Road and Kenyon Street. The East Acton office that serves the Old Oak Estate in Shepherds Bush will also now stay open as part of a Costcutter store and PO Ltd have assured local MP Andy Slaughter that the Olympia office which shut at Christmas will reopen as soon as possible on a nearby site.

What makes this more remarkable is that only seven in total of the 169 branches targeted for closure across London will now survive. In addition the Bollo Bridge Road office which serves the South Acton Estate is one of only six which are still being reviewed and may stay open. Andy Slaughter had arranged public meetings attended by hundreds of local residents during which Post Office executives were left in no doubt that they were wrong to consider the closures. Andy explained his campaign telling me "I realised it would be just gesture politics to oppose every closure. So I visited every post office under threat found out which were viable and which postmasters wanted to stay and built a campaign around the particular needs and facilities of each office and community. We held a packed public meeting in Askew Road and I wrote to over 17,000 households affected by the closures. I am extremely grateful to the many local residents who joined with me on this campaign. We were able to persuade Post Office Ltd that their criteria for closing the Shepherds Bush Post Offices was flawed. Murad did a great job defending the Kenyon Street outlet”.

Murad Qureshi said “This is a very welcome announcement. Hundreds of local residents had signed my petition to save the Kenyon Street Post Office. I'm really pleased for the owners of the business. They run a great shop that serves the whole community in that part of Fulham. It's a tribute to them and the residents that support them that we managed to make Post Office Ltd see the light”.

1 comment:

JB said...

Stephen,

I enjoyed reading your spin on Andy's Post Office voting. Essentially he's saying he's not bothered about post offices closing elsewhere around the country - those poor, blind and elderly folk are not his problem. Just the one's that vote for him count (and of course ensures he's in as many photos as possible taking all the credit!). You don't seriously believe educated readers fall for that, right?

I wouldn't have included him in this post if I were you, it makes you look just as hypocritical as he does.

If you want to have some sort of credibility as a decent, thoughtful and compelling opposition to the Tories in H&F (and a real potential alternative to them), you'll need to do better than this...