Petition to save main St Leonards post office attracts more than 2,000 signatures

Campaigners in central St Leonards. Picture by Roberts Photographic
Campaigners in central St Leonards. Picture by Roberts Photographic

Campaigners fighting against plans to close the main post office in St Leonards were in town on Saturday (May 6), gathering more signatures for their petition.

More than 2,000 have already put their name to the document since the campaign was launched.

Post Office Ltd first revealed its plans last July to replace or relocate directly-run Crown branches in 20 locations, the one in London Road included.

The company has said the changes to the Crown branch network are part of a ‘major modernisation programme’.

Campaigners have also set up an online petition at www.change.org called Save St Leonards Crown Post Office.

Council leader, Peter Chowney, who is also Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Hastings and Rye in next month’s election, said: “I congratulate the campaigners who are doing a magnificent job to secure the future of our publicly owned Crown Post Office.

“St Leonards is a town that has had more than its share of problems, with high levels of poverty and deprivation, in which retail businesses have found it difficult to thrive. Recently however, the town has seen significant regeneration, with a vibrant housing market, new businesses opening and empty shops re-occupied.

“But this regeneration process is still fragile. A lot of people are dependent on the Crown Post Office for services. Following a resolution passed by Hastings council opposing the closure, I wrote to Paula Vennells, the chief executive of the Post Office, urging her to reconsider the decision. We must keep this post office open.”

Kay Avery-Stallion, chairman of the campaign, who runs St Leonards’ Accessories in Norman Road, said: “If the Crown Post Office closes, people will lose far more than just stamps. Data from other areas shows many shops close within 18 months of losing a Crown Post Office. Yet we have a real chance of saving this vital service if more people join our campaign.

“We still need more signatures and we not only have the Change.Org. petition but a Facebook Page called Save St Leonards Crown Post Office. I encourage everyone to look at this regularly to keep informed and join in our campaign. We can win this.”

Resident campaigner, Rosie Brocklehurst-Franczak, said: “Post Office closure here in St Leonards would reduce footfall by 40 per cent and spending in shops by post office users by an average £30 a week? Businesses and residents are right to be very worried.”

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