In 2007, in the context of a £1.7 billion funding package to support the post office network, the Government introduced minimum access criteria to maintain a national network of post offices and, in particular to protect vulnerable consumers in deprived urban, rural and remote areas. These access criteria apply nationally and are based on the proportion of the population within specified distances from the nearest post office outlet rather than on density per head of population.
The Department does not hold data on the post office network analysed by country or region since 1997. I have therefore asked Alan Cook, the Managing Director of Post Office Ltd. to write direct to the hon. Member. Copies of the letter will be placed in the Libraries of the House.