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We need action to save post offices says Norwich postmaster

PUBLISHED: 10:38 04 July 2012

Sub postmaster Malcolm Wright.

Sub postmaster Malcolm Wright.

Archant © 2010

A Norwich sub postmaster says he is despairing over dwindling trade and a lack of new business.

Malcolm Wright, who runs the Vauxhall Street post office, claims successive governments have eroded the services he can offer – and the current government’s plan to spend £1.34bn modernising the Post Office will be “a waste of time” unless people have a reason to use it.

Mr Wright said: “I am suffering from a serious lack of customers, I can only put it down to what has happened in the last three years.

“The previous government took so much business away. There are so many transactions we should be doing here. I have to turn people away because I cannot process passports and benefit payments have to be done through the bank. I hear about branches closing and I fear I will be next.”

North Norfolk MP Norman Lamb, the government minister in charge of the Post Office, said: “Now for the first time in many years the government is choosing to invest, not in closure programmes, but in finding work for the Post Office. There are exciting things happening. I am completely opposed to the managed decline we had been seeing.”

A new contract with the DVLA is due to be announced in summer.

George Thomson, of the National Federation of Sub Postmasters said: “There is no doubt government services at post offices have reduced this decade. We believe post offices are the natural home for people to access central and local government services. We are encouraged by the government’s pledge. However, we need to see action, not just words.”

What do you think? Write to Evening News Letters, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE.

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