Duncan Hames, the prospective Lib Dem MP for Chippenham, Corsham, Melksham and Bradford-on-Avon, has spoken out against the governments plan to close 2500 Post Offices.
The closures are set to hit Wiltshire this week, sparking claims that the move will cause long term damage to our communities.
The announcement on December 11th is expected to abolish one in five of our local Post Offices. This round of closures comes on top of the 7500 already closed in the past Labour and Conservative administrations.
The consultation period for the public is usually six weeks. Duncan Hames asked the government to extend this period to reflect the Christmas holidays. It will now come to an end on January 31st.
There were angry reactions to those regions hit by the cuts earlier this year. The passionate protests seem set to hit Wiltshire equally. Campaigners are ready to hit the ground running. Duncan Hames has written to every sub-postmaster in the constituency to offer his help to keep our post offices open.
Local Lib Dem county councillor Ross Henning said: “Local people in Chippenham are passionate about their local post office, which is a vital part of our community. We must work together to save it!”
One of the principle concerns will be for the elderly people in the community, who will find it increasingly difficult to access a post office at all. The charity Age Concern said they were ‘extremely worried’ about the closures and that ‘the consultation period is insufficient to canvass local opinions and issues, on public transport for example.’
Duncan Hames, the prospective Lib Dem MP for the Chippenham constituency said: “It doesn’t have to be this way. Our proposals would see the introduction of a broad-reaching diversification and investment program which would benefit the economy, the community and the environment. We are the only party who really understands the vital importance of our local post office and the part it plays in the community.
“We have less than 8 weeks to save our local Post Offices from the Government’s axe. I will do everything I can to help.”
Local residents are being asked to back the campaign – you can sign a petition here.