Citizens furious over closure of New Cross Gate post office

New Cross Gate post office Pic: Eirini Christodoulaki

Telegraph Hill residents have taken to social media to protest the closure of the post office in New Cross Gate.

Following a public consultation, it was announced earlier this month that the Lewisham post office will close on February 14 next year. Residents criticised the decision of the closure on  the Facebook group ” Telegraph Hill Noticeboard”, highlighting the level of services the employees provide to the people.

They have also condemned the way the public consultation was carried out by the owner, Post Office Ltd. Locals believe that that the company did not address any of the issues the local community brought before the consultation committee.

Jana Pavasovic, 33, a Telegraph Hill resident,  told East London Lines: “I think the closure is utterly ludicrous. It makes no sense that they are saying the service will be as good, if not better when they are reducing the number of counters and moving the sorting office.

“I am also concerned that there will be yet another empty building in that area. It’s a very busy post office, always with queues, and it’s a really important resource for a lot of people. The closure letter did not address any of the concerns raised about the impact of this decision on the local community.”

In its announcement, Post Office Ltd said the post office will be moved to a One Stop store and called the move “necessary in order to achieve commercial sustainability and provide services that will meet customer needs”.

The future of the area and the quality of the services provided to the local community was central to the criticism.  The post office closure follows a series of other cutbacks on essential services in the area, like the closure of the Waldron Health Centre’s walk-in clinic.

Sanjit Chudha, 50, a marketing and PR director from Pepys Road, said: “Post offices provide a huge service for communities. With the death of this post office, any hopes of reviving business along the New Cross Road becomes ever more remote. We lost the bank four years ago too.

“The only shops which seem to be thriving are betting shops. That’s not a recipe for healthy communities, and it makes things more hostile for older people and the vulnerable. I’m also hugely concerned about the staff. Many have been here for years and know people by name. This closure unravels one of the threads which holds this diverse community together.”

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