Page last updated at 10:57 GMT, Tuesday, 13 May 2008 11:57 UK

Post Office to close 63 branches

Post box
The proposals are part of plans to close 2,500 branches nationally

Sixty-three post offices across West Yorkshire face closure taking the number of branches from 345 to 282.

Royal Mail announced the proposals on Tuesday and said a six-week consultation period would start.

It is part of the government's wider plan to reduce the number of branches nationally by up to 2,500.

Branches affected include 22 in Leeds, 11 in Bradford, five in Dewsbury, six in Wakefield and losses in Pontefract, Castleford, Batley and Mirfield.

If the closures go ahead, there will be 209 branches in urban areas of West Yorkshire and 73 in rural areas.

Hardwick Road Post Office in Carlton, Pontefract, is one of the branches earmarked for closure.

The Post Office is my livelihood and I am absolutely devastated
Sub post master Karim Zadeh

Sub post master Karim Zadeh said: "This is one the top 25 best performing branches in the Leeds and Wakefield area. I can't understand why we're being axed.

"We are the only one in Carlton and East Hardwick so we cover quite a big area and we're always very busy.

"I took the business over two years ago, but it's been here for more than 20 years. The post office is my livelihood and I'm absolutely devastated."

The Countryside Alliance has urged people to fight the closures.

Richard Dodd, northern regional director, said: "The fight certainly doesn't end here.

"Post offices are the social heart of many communities and without them many thousands of people, including many elderly and disabled, would be increasingly isolated."

Adrian Wales, the Post Office's network development manager for the North East, said: "Taking the decision to close any Post Office branch is always very difficult and we know it will cause concern to many of our customers.

"We want to ensure that everyone who uses, relies on, or has any concern with Post Office services is both fully aware of the proposed changes and able to give views on them."




SEE ALSO
Post offices closures announced
13 Feb 08 |  Humber
Post office branches set to close
08 Feb 08 |  North Yorkshire
Post Office to axe seven branches
13 Dec 07 |  South Yorkshire

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