Grove Park Post Office To Close Next Month

Blow for local community as premises withdrawn for future Co Op store


Double Blow To Chiswick Post Office Services

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Grove Park Post Office will close on Wednesday 28 March, to the dismay of many residents.

This follows the resignation of the Postmaster and the withdrawal of the premises at 6 Station Parade, Burlington Lane, W4 3HD for Post Office use. It will be turned into a Co-O convenience store.

The move is a blow to the local community even though the Post Office has said it welcomes applications from potential retail partners interested in running a post office in Grove Park.

Last year nearly forty Crown post offices were closed and there has been a move by Post Office Ltd. to close down sub-post offices. An estimated 3,000 sub-post offices (one third of the overall network) are scheduled to close.

The NISA shop in which the post office is based is being taken over by the Co-Operative group which is turning the premises into a supermarket. The plan is to knock through into the former Indian restaurant next door to create a sizeable shop. We have asked Co-Op if they intend to have a post office as part of the new supermarket and they did not respond.

The Post Office says, "We will continue to work hard to restore services in the area as soon as possible. In order to progress this, we would welcome any applications from potential retail partners interested in running Grove Park Post Office on their behalf. If you know anyone who is interested, please give them the Post Office Agency Recruitment team contact telephone number: 0845 601 6260."

However, a source within the local Post Office community has told that it is very unlikely anybody will want to take up the offer. The source said that the new contracts for postmasters meant they were paid on commission but also had to work long hours in the convenience stores which are now part of the new system and also paid on commission.

A petition was recently set up to retain the local Post Office in Grove Park, but it is difficult to see how this can happen given the current situation. When the Grove Park sub post office closes, the nearest service will be at the main Post Office at Heathfield Terrace, or at the sub post office at Strand on the Green.

Last year concerns were mounted over the future of the main Post Office with the possibility raised that the building where it is located could be redeveloped. This followed the sale of an adjacent building for development.

Both Royal Mail and the Post Office are tenants in the building at 1 Heathfield Terrace and there is increased speculation that the landlord may be considering demolishing the current building. Although most famous for being put in 'Room 101' by Sheila Hancock, the loss of the post office would leave the area very short of mail services.

Post Office Ltd is responsible for accepting parcels and letters whereas Royal handles delivery and mail collection.

The Royal Mail is also planning to move its delivery and enquiry services from Chiswick to a depot in Bollo Lane in Acton. According to one local source the move was prompted when the owner requested them to vacate the upper floors which were used as part of the sorting and delivery office. There has been widespread opposition from local residents to this, supported by local MP Ruth Cadbury who asked the Royal Mail to think of the impact on the community.

The Post Office and the convenience store which currently operates at the Heathfield Terrace site are not currently affected by this move.

The increase in electronic communications and huge drops in mail volumes has reduced the revenue of the traditional postal business. The post office network is losing an estimated £100 million a year on total sales of £1.2 billion.

February 24, 2018

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