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Town post office to reopen but may not be ready in time for Christmas

PUBLISHED: 08:00 27 October 2018 | UPDATED: 08:55 27 October 2018

The former Watton Post Office on the High Street. Picture: Matthew Usher.

The former Watton Post Office on the High Street. Picture: Matthew Usher.

© ARCHANT NORFOLK 2015

A Norfolk town will finally have a post office again after nearly six months without one when Watton Post Office reopens later this year.

However, the news, which comes two weeks after it was announced a new postmaster had been appointed, was met with concern due to the fact the town could be without a post office until the new year.

The new post office will be in Edwards News on the High Street, but the Post Office gave no guarantee it would open before Christmas.

Watton has been without a post office since its previous branch shut in May this year.

A spokesman for the Post Office said: “We are pleased to confirm that following the temporary closure of the Watton Post Office we plan to open a replacement branch at Watton Edwards News.

“We are keen to restore services to this community as soon as possible. However whenever we propose to move a Post Office to a new location – even when it is already temporarily closed – we are obliged to go through a formal engagement process, which begins today and will run up to 23rd November.

“We hope to open the replacement Post Office in December 2018/January 2019.”

Keith Gilbert, Breckland district councillor said: “It is fantastic news that it is going to be coming back. It was announced a couple of weeks ago that a new postmaster had been appointed.

“A lot of people were hoping it was going to be in Edwards because it is a perfect fit and I am delighted that that is where it is going to be and I wish them the best.”

Mr Gilbert added: “Lets hope it is open by Christmas because it is an extremely busy time of year. If people don’t have a service it is going to cause problems for some people so I really hope they get it up and running before Christmas.

“The post office is a vital service to the town. Not to have on in the town would have been horrendous. Watton desperately needs a post office.”

George Freeman, Mid Norfolk MP, also raised the concern about no post office during the Christmas period.

He said: “The Post Office is one of the beating hearts of market towns like Watton and I am delighted that the post office have found a new premises and will be reopening.

“With Christmas soon, I will be seeking assurances from Post Office Ltd that there will be a proper postal service in the town through the Christmas period.”

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