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Dockhead Post Office closure confirmed

The Dockhead Post Office is to close, Post Office bosses have confirmed. Southwark Council leader Nick Stanton has described the consultation as a "sham".

Dockhead Post Office

In February Post Office Ltd announced that it intended to close 169 branches in London, including Dockhead Post Office in Bermondsey.

The public consultation period finished at the end of March and 155 closures will now go ahead starting from next month.

"This is proof positive that the Post Office closure consultation was nothing more than a sham," says Southwark Council leader Nick Stanton, whose Riverside ward includes Dockhead.

"Our concerns about access, deprivation and waiting times have not been addressed in any way.

"Thousands of local people signed petitions opposing these closures, but the Post Office has ignored their views.

"Post office customers are among the most vulnerable people in our community – these closures will come as yet another blow to these people."

Simon Hughes: PO "ripping out vital public services"

"A combination of post office management and a Labour Government have now cut off the lifeline for many of our people and many of Southwark and Bermondsey's communities," says Simon Hughes MP.

"Following earlier closures of large offices at the Elephant and the Bricklayers Arms, and local post offices in Abbey Street and Bermondsey Street, the Post Office has ignored local opinions and local needs and is now ripping out vital public services from the heart of our communities in Bermondsey, Rotherhithe and Walworth.

"Today is also a very sad day for the families who have run the Post Offices in Dockhead and Ilderton Road for so long and so well.

"At every occasion between now and the next general election local residents and businesses will be reminded by me that the run-down and closure of so many local post offices is in entirely the responsibility of the Labour Government."

Impact on local businesses

"The main concern expressed by respondents during local public consultation in relation to our proposal for this branch was the potential impact of the proposed closure on local businesses, which respondents said would need to access mail services elsewhere," says Post Office Ltd in its official decision notice.

"Respondents also commented on the helpful staff at Post Office Dockhead branch, said its extended weekend opening hours were convenient and commented that it was busy and an integral part of the local community. Respondents also commented on the ongoing development of the Shad Thames area."

The company says that it received a petition opposing the proposed closure, but has decided to proceed anyway.

Post Office Ltd points out that there are two branches within a mile of Dockhead, including the Jamaica Road office.

"Post Office Ltd has also considered the capacity of these alternative branches to absorb increased customer levels arising from local development and is satisfied that these branches have the capacity to absorb additional customers.

"Taking these and all other relevant factors into account, including the needs of more vulnerable customers, Post Office Limited has decided to proceed with the closure of Post Office Dockhead branch."

Anita Turner from Post Office Ltd said: "These are difficult decisions which have not been taken lightly. We have considered very carefully all the comments made during the public consultation. We believe that the amended plan announced today offers our customers in London the best prospect for a sustainable network in the future, bearing in mind the Government's minimum access criteria and the other factors the Government has asked us to consider."

SE11 branch reprieved

"It's great that the Post Office have seen sense and taken note of the serious concerns that have been raised by myself and the local community about Lambeth Walk Post Office," says Labour's Val Shawcross, London Assembly member for Lambeth & Southwark.

"However, I am deeply disappointed that this good sense did not prevail elsewhere."

Lib Dems call for Boris Johnson to intervene

"One of the Mayor's strongest manifesto pledges was to stop the Government from axing local Post Offices," says newly elected Lib Dem London Assembly member (and Southwark councillor) Caroline Pidgeon.

"The Mayor needs to step up and show that he is serious about protecting local Post Office branches.

"Today over 150 Post Offices were axed and Londoners had almost no opportunity to protest against these closures.

"Liberal Democrats have been working hard to prevent these closures. Today's result comes as a disappointment, not just to me, but also to many Londoners. Branches ... are to be shut down despite their obvious value to the community and the strength of protest from local residents.

"It would be a real disappointment if Londoners' protests fell on deaf ears just because the Mayor is preoccupied in his first days in office."


Do you use Dockhead Post Office? Will you be affected by the closure?

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