- Posted by: Joyce Watson MS
- Category: Feature
Assembly Member Joyce Watson has welcomed news that Shortbridge Street Post Office, Newtown, is to be refurbished next month.
The town-centre branch will be upgraded to one of the Post Office’s new ‘main-style’ branches, offering customers a more modern open plan environment, a full range of products and services and longer Saturday opening hours: 9am – 5.30pm (it currently closes at 12.30pm on Saturday).
Mrs Watson commented:
“With the big banks continuing to close rural branches, like HSBC in Llanidloes, it is good to see the Post Office investing in our communities, providing important financial services.”
The new-look Newtown Post Office is scheduled to open on Monday 16 September – it will close for refurbishment on Monday 2 September at 5.30pm. Customers are advised to use either nearby Caersws or Kerry post offices during the closure period.
However, Mrs Watson repeated her “serious misgivings” about the impending sell off of Royal Mail.
Last month the Labour mid and west AM warned that privatising Royal Mail will be “disastrous” for rural postal services.
Speaking at first minister’s questions on Tuesday 9 July, Mrs Watson said the sell-off threatens the survival of village post offices.
“It is the same old Tory story,” Mrs Watson said, “break it up, sell it off, massive job cuts, worse services, a quick buck, and long-term price rises. My worry is that the financial stability of post offices in rural villages will be put under intolerable strain.”
In June, Business Secretary Vince Cable confirmed that the UK government will sell Royal Mail through a flotation on the London Stock Exchange, possibly in the autumn.