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Post Office confirms 'disappointing' plans to franchise Holloway branch following consultation

PUBLISHED: 15:48 27 March 2019 | UPDATED: 15:48 27 March 2019

Protestors outside Holloway Post Office. Picture: Gary Watt

Protestors outside Holloway Post Office. Picture: Gary Watt

Archant

Islington's economy chief has slammed the Post Office after it today confirmed it will press ahead with plans to franchise its Junction Road branch.

The Post Office Ltd has published a statement reiterating its plan to close the store and relocate it inside the Today’s Extra, which is further up the street, where it would operate alongside the existing business.

This follows a six-week consultation period, where the firm suggested it would ignore input about its “commercial decision” to move the branch.

Cllr Asima Shaikh, Islington’s executive member for jobs and economy, said: “We’re extremely disappointed that Post Office Ltd are pressing ahead with their plans to relocate the busy Upper Holloway Post Office, despite us raising our concerns about the negative impact their plans could have on both local residents and staff.

“The move comes after Islington has already seen the closure of Highbury Corner Post Office and the franchising of Finsbury Park Post Office in recent years, making it even harder for local people to access the services they rely on.

“I will be writing to Post Office Ltd to seek reassurances that other branches that serve our community in Islington will not face closure.”

The current branch is due to close on May 1, with the franchised store opening the following day.

The Post Office says 100 people took part in its consultation, and that the new facilities will be wheelchair user-friendly.

A Post Office spokesperson said: “The Post Office is not immune to the pressures facing all retailers on the high street and that’s why we have to make changes, to make sure our services can remain at the heart of communities for many years to come.”

Islington North’s MP Jeremy Corbyn has “wholeheartedly” condemned the decision, and the Communication Workers Union allege it will lower standards and lead to a smaller and minimally trained workforce.

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