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Post Office Network

Volume 481: debated on Thursday 23 October 2008

6. To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what progress has been made on the network change programme for the post office network in Greater Manchester and High Peak. (229221)

Following local consultations, Post Office Ltd announced its decisions on the Greater Manchester and High Peak area plan on 12 August. These confirmed that 316 branches would be retained in the area, and that four closure proposals, including Spotland Road in Rochdale, had been withdrawn. To date, 63 post office closures have been confirmed for Greater Manchester and High Peak with decisions on two other closure proposals still awaited.

7. To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what progress has been made on the post office network change programme. (229222)

Local consultations on all 42 of Post Office Ltd's area plans have closed and decisions have been announced on 41 area plans. To date, 87 closure proposals and five outreach proposals had been withdrawn in the light of responses to local consultations. Following the network change programme, on average, over 90 per cent. of customers nationally will see no change to their local post office.

8. To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what guidance his Department gave to community groups on participating in the Post Office consultation on network change; and if he will make a statement. (229223)

The arrangements for local consultation on Post Office Ltd's Network Change Programme area plans were the responsibility of the company, operating within the framework of a Memorandum of Understanding agreed with Postwatch, and monitored closely by the consumer body. I understand that there was extensive participation and levels of response to the network change proposals put forward to local consultation from local authorities and other community and representative groups.