Residents’ fears over future of Royal Mail Highbury sorting office

The Highbury sorting office in Hamilton Park, Highbury

The Highbury sorting office in Hamilton Park, Highbury - Credit: Archant

Residents have expressed their concern over the possible closure of the postal sorting office in Hamilton Park, Highbury.

Although no final decision has yet been made by Royal Mail, it says it is considering relocating the office to North Road, Holloway.

Spokeswoman Sally Hopkins said: “This is part of Royal Mail’s ongoing transformation of its business and work to increase the efficiency of its operation as well as providing delivery offices which are fit for purpose for our staff and for our customers.”

The move means that staff would have to go from Holloway to Highbury to deliver post. As the delivery office also serves as a pick-up centre for missed mail, residents could also face a possible two-mile walk to collect items.

A number of people have complained about the possible closure, including Gabby Mann, who lives in Highbury Grange.

She said: “The site in North Road is over two miles away from Highbury Barn. It seems more about money than improving customer service.

“How will the old and the disabled be able to pick up parcels and letters? It will take two buses from here to get to North Road.”

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Caroline Russell, councillor for Highbury East, said: “It is worrying that the Post Office is considering closure of this useful facility. Relocation is likely to lead to inconvenience, increased car trips and loss of local employment.”

She added: “I hope the Post Office thinks hard about the impact of their decision on the local community before rushing to act on this.

“Residents are already gearing up to resist this closure and I will be supporting them.”

Local Liberal Democrats have also recently written to the Royal Mail, urging it to look at options in Highbury where residents could pick up parcels and letters.

Former Highbury Councillor and Liberal Democrat Campaigner Terry Stacy said: “This is a real blow to residents and Highbury as a whole following on from the closure of the Highbury Corner Post Office, I don’t think this is about improving services its more about making money out of the site. The site is worth millions of pounds.”

The Royal Mail said that it was hoping to minimise any impact on customers.

“Whenever a delivery office move goes ahead, we always consider alternative parcel pick-up facilities and offer our customers alternative means of receiving undelivered items of mail.

“This includes delivery to a designated neighbour, re-delivery to the addressee or to another local address specified by the customer, six days a week.”