Concern over planned closure of Whaley Bridge Post Office

The Whaley Bridge post office is due to temporarily close on February 26.
The Whaley Bridge post office is due to temporarily close on February 26.

Whaley Bridge’s Canal Street Post Office is set to close down next month following the resignation of its postmaster.

The branch will close ‘temporarily’ on February 26, however the Horwich End branch half a mile away will remain open.

A Post Office spokesman said he wanted to reassure customers that ‘we will do all we can to restore services as soon as possible’.

He said: “Unfortunately from time to time Post Office branches do temporarily close for reasons beyond our control.

“The majority of our branches are run by independent retailers - meaning we are not the owners of the premises and regrettably we are often unable to immediately reopen the branch ourselves.”

High Peak MP Ruth George said the franchise at Whaley Bridge Post Office had been advertised for several months.

She has met with Post Office bosses to press the case for retaining a larger post office in the town.

Ruth said: “The loss of the main Post Office at Whaley Bridge would be a great blow to the town centre.

“I know how important it is for many people – including me. But so far I understand there haven’t been any expressions of interest.

“With hard-working volunteers in Whaley Bridge working with the Canal and Rivers Trust to attract tourists to the canal basin and Transhipment Warehouse the post office is an important part of the link between the canal and town centre.

“There are nearly 300 less franchised Post Offices since the contracts changed in 2016 in spite of nearly £2 billion of government investment into the Post Office.

“I’ve met with the Post Office head office to ask for more services to be able to be provided from Whaley Bridge and a better contract for the store which would make it more viable.

“If you are interested in running Whaley Bridge Post Office either at the shop on Canal Street or in another retail store in Whaley have a look at the advert to see if it’s for you or contact the Post Office for more information.”

Conservative parliamentary candidate Robert Largan and Whaley Bridge county councillor Alison Fox have also joined forces to call for action to secure the future of the Post Office.

Robert said: “The Post Office is a really important part of community life in Whaley Bridge and many residents have been in touch with me to express their concerns.

“Councillor Alison Fox and I have made it clear - we will work with anyone and everyone to help secure the future of Whaley Bridge’s post office.”

The Post Office spokesman added: “I can confirm Horwich End Post Office in Whaley Bridge will remain open.

“This is 0.5 miles away from Whaley Bridge Post Office.”

A petition supporting MP Ruth George’s campaign for the retention of the main post office in Whaley Bridge can be signed by visiting www.ruthforhighpeak.co.uk.

To apply to run a post office in Whaley Bridge visit runapostoffice.co.uk/home/result/show/whaley-bridge-post-office-whaley-bridge-sk23-7ls.