Fears for the future of Halcon Post Office in Taunton after it closes (From Somerset County Gazette)
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Fears for the future of Halcon Post Office in Taunton after it closes
5:02pm Monday 16th December 2013 in News
THERE are fears over the future of Roman Road Post Office, in Taunton, after it shut without warning.
The Post Office said the closure is temporary and it is working to reinstate a service to the local community.
But it has not ruled out relocating from the existing Taunton Deane Council-owned premises.
It is understood that sub-postmaster Ronny Bell closed the shutters and left them down at the end of business on Tuesday, December 17, after resigning.
Local councillors have met Taunton Deane MP Jeremy Browne, who wants "a strong and sustainable future" for the Post Office and has written to the Business Secretary Vince Cable.
District councillor Tim Slattery said: "I have elderly and disabled constituents who’ve contacted me worried about the long-term future of the post office in Halcon.
"I urge all parties involved in this unusual case to secure a resolution as soon as possible.
"I’m in contact with Post Office Ltd and I hope they’re pursuing every avenue open to them.
"Halcon needs its post office and I for one will be doing all I can to get it re-opened."
Fellow ward councillor Judy Gaden said: "It would appear that Post Office Ltd were aware of the situation that has ultimately resulted in the post office closure in Halcon.
"That being the case, I’m disappointed that the ward councillors weren't informed officially about the closure."
Ward councillor Federica Smith said : "It will be a real nail in the coffin for communities like ours."
County councillor Simon Coles said: "It’s disgraceful if they're closing the post office. It's terrible putting money before humanity.
"If it shuts hundreds of residents and especially elderly people will be forced to use a post office a mile across town.
''For old people it will be very difficult. How will they be able to get their money?
''There really is no reason to close it down, no reason at all. We need to fight against these closures. This is an important lifeline for the elderly."
A Post Office spokeswoman said the outlet had closed due to the sub-postmaster’s resignation.
She added: “We’d like to assure our customers that we’re currently looking at all of the options available that will enable us to restore this service to the community as soon as possible.
“In exploring these options, it’s important that any future service is sustainable for the person operating the service, as well as for Post Office Ltd.
“Any relocation of the branch would be subject to a public consultation.
“We’d like to apologise for any inconvenience the temporary closure may cause.
“We hope that our customers will continue to use nearby Post Office services.”
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