Post office lifeline appeal
PENSIONERS will have to travel over four miles to collect their money and pay the bills when two Somerset villages lose their post offices for at least two months. The current postmasters in Wedmore and Shipham have resigned and will officially leave the
PENSIONERS will have to travel over four miles to collect their money and pay the bills when two Somerset villages lose their post offices for at least two months. The current postmasters in Wedmore and Shipham have resigned and will officially leave their posts in April.The premises in Church Street, Wedmore, will no longer operate as a post office. A new building and postmaster would need to be found if the village is to continue enjoying its own facilities. Wedmore Post Office is also a delivery centre, posing problems for officials who may have to relocate postal staff. The post office in Hollow Road, Shipham, which is a sub-post office, could be turned into another facility, but only if an alternative site in Shipham is found.Help the Aged spokesman David Sinclair said: "Post offices are a vital lifeline. For some older folk they are the only way to access services, do banking or meet other people. The Government is busy shutting them all, not taking into account that some postmasters might retire as well."A post office spokesman told the Somerset Mercury that an applicant for each village has been found, but even if they prove to be suitable, both villages will be without a post office from the first week in April until the end of May. He added: "We have identified a possible site for a Shipham Post Office, which may have to operate as a core outreach branch. "This means a sub-postmaster from a larger village would operate in Shipham for a few hours a week."We have also found a possible candidate and premises for Wedmore and we are currently in the middle of the interviewing process. "If both candidates prove to be suitable, both villages could have their offices running again by the end of May at the earliest. "If they are not suitable, we will have to continue looking.