MARCH SUB-POSTMASTER PROMISES TO FIGHT PROPOSED POST OFFICE CLOSURE

PUBLISHED: 13:31 08 July 2008 | UPDATED: 08:32 02 June 2010

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The axe looms over St Peter’s Road post office, but sub-postmaster Kiran Brahmbhatt and staff member Mandy Simpson are ready to fight the government plan

8123BP78MX11-Post The axe looms over St Peter's Road post office, but sub-postmaster Kiran Brahmbhatt and staff member Mandy Simpson are ready to fight the government plan

A SUB-postmaster, whose post office serves hundreds of elderly March residents, has promised he will fight the proposed closure of his branch. Kiran Brahmbhatt s post office is one of four in Fenland facing the axe, under the Government s plan to close up

A SUB-postmaster, whose post office serves hundreds of elderly March residents, has promised he will fight the proposed closure of his branch.

Kiran Brahmbhatt's post office is one of four in Fenland facing the axe, under the Government's plan to close up to 2,500 post offices across the UK.

The future of March's other two post offices - at Tesco Express in Broad Street and in Wisbech Road - are secure, but Mr Brahmbhatt thinks his post office will also survive with the support of councils, North East Cambs MP Malcolm Moss and the public.

"It's devastating, but a bit of a surprise as well," said Mr Brahmbhatt, who runs the post office within Leeson's, in St Peter's Road.

"I just don't understand why the axe has fallen on us, but if we get your total support we will survive.

"We have got lots of elderly people and care homes at our end of town and they walk here. I don't know how they will manage without this post office.

"The Post Office says people will be no more than a mile away from a post office after the closures but, if this one is taken away, people living on the Cavalry Estate or along Wimblington Road will not be within two miles of Tesco Express.

"We actually have a number of customers come here from Tesco Express, because they are waiting too long. Those queues will just get worse if this closes.

"If logic, prudence and common sense prevail this post office will be kept open."

Mr Brahmbhatt, who took over at Leeson's about three years ago, says his post office is "borderline" for closure, under the Post Office's guidelines.

He said: "I don't know what that guideline is, but I very much believe we are short of it by about seven per cent.

"But all my customers are devastated. They're furious. They do not want to lose their post office."

Two jobs are at risk under the proposed closure - one a full-time role and one a part-time role.

Mr Brahmbhatt said: "They do not deserve this, they work really hard and I am really proud of them.

"I have never had a customer leave with a long face and that is down to them."

A petition has been launched at the post office counter for people to lodge their objection to the proposed closure.

Public consultation will finish on August 26 and a final decision will be announced shortly afterwards. If the branch is permanently closed, it will take place in October at the earliest.

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