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Post Office 'investigating options' following shock closure of Elton branch

Residents forced to go to Helsby or Ellesmere Port in the meantime

The 'To Let' sign has gone up on Elton Post Office, which closed before Christmas(Image: David Norbury)

The Post Office says it is still investigating options following the shock closure of a village outlet.

The sudden loss before Christmas of Elton Post Office led to local politicians demanding action.

Elton ward borough councillor Stephen Smith (Lab) and Ellesmere Port and Neston MP Justin Madders joined forces to demand that immediate steps should be taken.

They argued the closure could leave some residents unable to pick up their pension over Christmas as the nearest available counters were several miles away.

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The branch closed suddenly on Friday, December 16 without residents, the MP or the borough council being informed or consulted as would be the usual practice.

After several requests for comment from Mr Madders, a Post Office manager confirmed the branch was closed on a temporary basis due to a dispute between the landlord and the tenant of the property.

The manager was unable to confirm when the branch would reopen and it was suggested that residents should use the Helsby , Wolverham or Ellesmere Port Asda branches instead.

This suggestion was met with anger by Mr Madders and Cllr Smith, who called on the Post Office to take urgent action.

The MP has now visited Elton to see for himself while Cllr Smith has been contacted by the network operations manager at Post Office Ltd Denise Nutbrown.

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She has told Cllr Smith in a letter: “Regrettably the premises are no longer available for Post Office use.

“I would like to reassure you that we are working hard to keep any period of closure to a minimum and we are currently investigating the options available which will enable us to reinstate the Post Office service to the local community.”

Her letter advises Cllr Smith that any future change to Post Office services in the village would be handled in line with the Post Office code of practice.

This is said to set down how it would communicate and explain any changes.

It concluded: “I would like to apologise for the inconvenience the temporary closure may cause,” and added: ”I hope that our customers will continue to use the Post Office.”

The Post Office more recently suggested customers could use Helsby Post Office at 215 Chester Road in Helsby or Mickle Trafford Post Office at 2 Wells Close, Mickle Trafford.

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