Hundreds back South Lynn Post Office campaign

Whites Premier Store on London Road King's Lynn, owners Pam Bisla (front left) and Satnam Singh (4th left), along with Staff member Debbie Gromett (2nd left) are joined by customers who have made a petition against the proposed move of the Post Office.
Whites Premier Store on London Road King's Lynn, owners Pam Bisla (front left) and Satnam Singh (4th left), along with Staff member Debbie Gromett (2nd left) are joined by customers who have made a petition against the proposed move of the Post Office.

Hundreds of residents have come together to try to save an “excellent” Post Office in South Lynn from being moved.

A petition was started last week to keep it at its current location at the Whites Premier store on London Road after it was revealed that the service could be relocated further down the road.

Whites shop on London Road, King's Lynn, in 1962.

Whites shop on London Road, King's Lynn, in 1962.

Now, more than 300 people have signed the petition which argues that the new proposals would be “unsuitable”.

Proposals included in consultation documents suggest that if it were to move, the services would be offered from a “modern open plan branch”.

But shop owner Pam Bisla said: “We would be ready to change the Post Office to an open counter next week if they had asked us, as we now have the finances to do so.”

Customers have also claimed that the proposed move would be “unneccesary”.

Jean Tuck, was one, who said: “If it moves, it will upset a lot of elderly people.”

Mrs Bisla said when she and her husband took on the business in 2014, they had hoped they would be able to take the Post Office on in years to come, as it is currently being run by an agency.

“If the Post Office does move, it will affect our business and the customers. It’s because of the community that we are here. It’s the community Post Office. They don’t want it moving anywhere else.

“I just wish someone had contacted us before the plans came to light,” she said.

And customers have voiced their concerns should the proposals go ahead.

Mrs Tuck said: “You can’t park down the road at the new location. But it’s a very useful place to have the Post Office at White’s.

“Lots of elderly people use it, and they are not going to be able to walk down there.”

The petition says: “The present Post Office services are excellent, management is totally efficient, professional and experienced.”

The location is more residential, has better parking for disabled people, and the shop offers a variety of goods, it adds.

Whites has been a local name for over a hundred years, with a number of customers highlighting the prominent role the shop has played in the town over the past hundred years.

Mrs Bisla said some of these people, who remember Whites from bygone years, had brought in old photos to her as well, to emphasise its heritage.

A Post Office spokeswoman said: “We are in the midst of modernising our network of Post Offices, which will help secure services for the future.

“The South Lynn branch is currently operated by a temporary Postmaster who was offered the opportunity to take on the branch on a permanent basis.

“When the opportunity was declined, the vacancy was advertised and we are now consulting on a proposal to incorporate the Post Office into a new newsagents and permanent location for the service.”

The consultation is open until Wednesday, April 12.

To have your say, visit: postofficeviews.co.uk; email: comments@postoffice.co.uk; call: 03457 22 33 44; or write to: FREEPOST Your Comments.