Post office protests

Sir – Have they gone totally overboard? Closing Roe Green Post Office; closing Salisbury Square Post Office? Have they forgotten that, as things currently stand, the Town Centre Post Office in Martins is also for the chop? Hopefully Action Hatfield can

Sir - Have they gone totally overboard? Closing Roe Green Post Office; closing Salisbury Square Post Office?

Have they forgotten that, as things currently stand, the Town Centre Post Office in Martins is also for the chop? Hopefully Action Hatfield can help to save that one for the moment, but looking at the worst scenario that would leave just two post offices in the whole of Hatfield - Birchwood, inarguably the best Post Office in the town anyway, and High View.

I don't blame the current government. I blame years of totally inefficient administration of the Post Office organisation. And who suffers? As always, the general public.

Come the revolution!


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Cllr Mike Alder, Hatfield Central.

SIR - I read Mike Hobday's letter about the inevitability of post office closures and that, in his view, the only way to avoid its closures is to throw tax payers' money at the problem.

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Many people only want a facility to process cheques, whether for cheques received or cheques issued, and what better way to achieve that than through a Post Office structure which is already in place but without being tied to a high street bank?

POs can be made as viable as banks in their own right. Use tax payers' money to develop a more viable business and move away from underpinning a lame duck concept using tax payer's money.

R. Griffiths, Tax Payers Alliance.

Sir - With the criticism of the Government for its post offices closure programme it should be remembered that it is no longer within their gift to make decisions on policy, they are only following the dictates of their Brussels masters. EU directives 97/67/EC and 2002/39/EC instruct all governments to privatise their postal services by 2009 and forbid subsidising the industry where it is unprofitable.

Inevitably this results in private companies cherry picking the profitable parts and leaving Royal Mail with the unprofitable parts such as delivery to rural areas. A letter from Brussels to David Miliband of November 28, 2007 states "the transformation programme (ie privatisation) will involve the Royal Mail reducing the size of its post office network by 2,500 branches". Yet another example of the disadvantage of being subject to EU legislation - but the ratification process goes on!

As a senior Brussels elitist said: "The dogs may bark but the caravan rolls on". Or if you prefer, "Sod the people, we will do it our way".

Cliff Hassall, Carleton Rise, Welwyn.

SIR - Your excellent feature (WHT, June 11) drew attention to the protests of local people against the possible loss of our post offices. As a new Handside councillor, I attended the very vocal march and got a real sense of the strength of feeling about the proposed closures. But of course, the protesters who joined us were the tip of the iceberg and they represented their neighbours who were unable to come - often elderly or disabled people who need the post office for many reasons, not least for the personal human contact it allows them.

The route we took went from the Marsden Road Post Office to Howardsgate PO. This is the route that users of the Marsden Road PO would have to take if their local service were shut. It is not an easy journey in a wheelchair or with a walking stick. That is why the people marching were so important - because they gave a strong voice to our vulnerable residents who cannot make that journey themselves.

Cllr Fiona Thomson, Handside Ward.

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