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Farron welcomes 'Lifeline' for Post Offices

November 13, 2012 12:41 PM

Tim Farron with local residents at a Post OfficeSouth Lakes MP Tim Farron has today welcomed the announcement that the Post Office Ltd is to be awarded a contract to provide tax discs and driving licenses expected to be worth £450 million over the next decade.

In a written ministerial statement to the House of Commons Transport Secretary Patrick Mcloughlin announced that the Post Office network is to be awarded an initial 7 year contract to provide front office counter services for the DVLA, with the option to extend for a further 3. Under the contract, which starts next April, 4,700 Post Offices will offer services for Road Tax and Vehicle transactions, with 750 of these also handling driver licensing.

Tim has warned in the past of the threat facing rural post offices as a result of a loss of DVLA services, so today's news represents a huge success and a genuine lifeline for many outlets in South Lakes.

Expressing his pleasure at the news, Tim said: "This announcement will be extremely encouraging for many communities across Cumbria, where rural Post Offices have been experiencing increasingly tough times. This decision secures up to ten years of DVLA services being administered by Post Offices, and indeed offers scope for them to provide over the counter services for other government departments.

"I hope that along with the revenue this contract provides the increased custom to Post Office shops generated by the necessity of customers to visit for DVLA services will be of enormous benefit and keep these resources at the heart of our communities. It is fantastic news and a much needed lifeline."