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Customers suffering from decision to downgrade South Lakeland Post Offices-Farron

May 19, 2009 12:00 AM

The level of customer service at South Lakeland's Post Offices has suffered from the decision to downgrade five full Post Offices into outreach centres according to local MP Tim Farron.

Queuing times have reportedly increased with massive numbers of customers waiting to be served at Stricklandgate Head Office following the closure of Post Offices at Kirkland, Oxenholme and Hallgarth. With Cartmel Post Office set to be downgraded into an outreach centre within the next few weeks, Mr Farron has written to the Chief Executive of Post Office Ltd calling for more resources to be committed to resolve the situation.

Mr Farron has also tabled an Early Day Motion in the House of Commons expressing his disappointment that Post Offices such as Cartmel that were retained after last years Network Change Programme have been shut or downgraded without any consultation with local residents.

Commenting Mr Farron said:

"It's clear that Post Office Ltd haven't taken the necessary measures to ensure that the quality of customer service isn't comprised by their decision to downgrade five South Lakeland Post Offices into outreach centres.

"Basic problems like having to queue for long periods of time are just further evidence that the recent restructuring of the Post Office has done nothing to strengthen the Post Office Network. The Kendal Crown office is now under immense pressure due to the closure of nearby Kirkland and Longpool post offices."

"The controversial closure programme last year left Cartmel intact after a full consultation process however; the decision to downgrade it to an outreach centre this month was taken without any consultation with local residents.

"Post Office Ltd must act immediately to improve the level of customer service across the remaining Post Offices in South Lakeland. A good first step would be to retain a full replacement for Cartmel Post Office and ensure that residents of South Lakeland don't suffer from the downgrading of another full Post Office."