Alan Johnson MP, former Home Secretary and former Communications Workers Union General Secretary, has added his weight to the campaign to save Lupus Street Post Office and will be visiting the post office at 12 noon on Tuesday 18th June.
The campaign has already gained wide support from all sections of the local community who have pointed out to the Post Office that;
• Residents face a 20 minutes’ walk to the nearest alternative post offices in Vauxhall Bridge Road and Ebury Street with no direct bus links. This is of particular concern to older, infirm and disabled residents.
• The queues at Vauxhall Bridge Road post office are already regularly stretched outside on the pavement, a fact acknowledged by the Post Office
• The Post Office in Vauxhall Bridge Road does not have access for disabled customers with wheelchairs and the Post Office representatives could not say how much it would cost to do the required works.
• The Post Office say that Lupus Street Post Office ‘loses £100,000 a year’; they say that for every £1 of income it costs the post office £1.84. However, statistics provided by the Post Office to the CWU suggest that the figure is £1.33. The confusion over this key financial aspect is of serious concern and casts doubt on the reliability of the figures on which the Post Office is basing its case for closure.
• The use of Lupus Street post office for Council-related transactions is the highest in Westminster and if this post office is closed residents will have nowhere where they can pay their rent and rates or renew their parking permit in person now that the Council has closed all its One Stop shops
• Lupus Street traders use the Post Office banking facilities and if this post office were to close, local businesses would lose this important business facility, as well as having the increased worry of having to carry cash some distance to banks elsewhere
• Experience elsewhere shows that when post offices close down the surrounding local businesses suffer badly, leading to more empty shops, to the detriment of the wider community.
Councillor Paul Dimoldenberg, Leader of the Labour Group said;
“It is great news that Alan Johnson is coming to Lupus Street to give his support to the campaign. Alan’s presence will send a strong message to the Post Office ‘top brass’ that they will have a hard job closing down Lupus Street and they have got a real fight on their hands.”