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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 February 2007, 11:12 GMT
Post Office closures
Lucy Breakwell
The Politics Show North West

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Campaigners have fought hard to save rural post offices

Times have changed and technology has moved on. You can now renew your car tax online and have benefits paid directly in your bank account.

So where does that leave your local post office?

According to a review of the Post Office network by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) post offices across the country are losing £4m a week and that in both urban and rural areas too many branches are competing for the same customers.

The consultation paper says that last year the 800 smallest rural post offices served just 16 people a week - costing the taxpayer £17 a transaction.

1,600 post offices served fewer than 20 customers.

Closures proposed

Therefore, it is proposing to close up to 2,500 post offices nationwide over an 18-month period starting in summer 2007.

Not surprisingly, the decision is causing controversy across the North West.

Age Concern, the Countryside Alliance and the Townswomen's Guild are just some of the organisations voicing concern about the proposals.

Your view

The Politics Show North West has been right across the region finding out what you think about the DTI's consultation paper.

We will be reporting from the village of Singleton in Wyre.

Residents are concerned that if the post office there were to close then the next nearest one is in Poulton Le-Fylde - a busy town that is a bus ride away.

We will also be hearing from the minister in charge of post offices, Jim Fitzpatrick MP.

Success highlighted

The consultation paper from the DTI highlights some smaller post offices that have diversified and are doing well.

Puddleducks Post Office and café in Dunsop Bridge is a good example.

It is a thriving business with a reputation spreading overseas.

The Politics Show, Sunday 25 February 2007, BBC One at 12:00 GMT.


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