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Fears over Burnley post office shake-up
2:23pm Friday 8th February 2013 in News
COUNCIL leader Julie Cooper has pledged she will fight to protect the future of Burnley’s main post office after plans were announced to seek new partners for 70 key sites across the UK.
The Hargreaves Street branch is one of 70 ‘crown’ post offices which could be sold off to a leading retailer, to maintain services.
Post Office bosses say they are losing £40million a year on the network but have pledged there will be no redundancies.
But Coun Cooper is concerned that the move will jeopardise the futures of staff currently working at the office.
She said: “This is a well-used post office and I have always been impressed by the efficency of the staff who work there.
“I am planning to start a petition, with the support of Burnley Labour Party, so that the government understands how much people value this service.”
Communication Workers Union officials have also expressed fears about the move, claiming there are already opening-hour problems under existing franchise deals. General secretary Billy Hayes said the move amounted to the ‘partial destruction’ of the crown office network.
A Post Office spokesman said: “To maintain our high street presence we will be looking to find retail partners for 70 of our branches, enabling us to stay in these locations. The Post Office successfully works with many partners and in some areas it is more viable to partner with quality retailers. There are no compulsory redundancies planned as part of this strategy.”