BBC Home
Explore the BBC
BBC News
Launch consoleBBC NEWS CHANNEL
Last Updated: Thursday, 5 July 2007, 09:17 GMT 10:17 UK
Churches to operate post offices
The Rt Rev Anthony Priddis
The Bishop of Hereford would like to see post offices in the churches
Post offices set up inside churches could be the answer to rural parishioners' prayers.

The Bishop of Hereford, the Rt Rev Anthony Priddis, is asking congregations if their buildings could be used as post offices in the future.

In May, the government announced about 2,500 post offices - a fifth of those left in the UK - are to close by 2009.

"If they disappear it will be the more vulnerable members of our community that suffer most," the bishop said.

Community issues

In his letter to all parishes the bishop said many of the closing post offices will be in rural areas.

The Diocese of Hereford, which covers Herefordshire, south Shropshire and parts of Powys and Worcestershire, is the most rural diocese in the Church of England.

When the government announced the post office closures it said it intended to create 500 outreach post offices in some areas which the bishop sees as an opportunity for the church.

"These outreach posts will need premises, and congregations may want to consider making church buildings available to assist with this.

"The number of our post offices may be set to reduce, but the opportunities for us to be engaged with the issues of our communities abound," he said.


SEE ALSO
2,500 more post offices to close
17 May 07 |  Politics

RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites



FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific