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Businesses interested in taking on Melksham post office services
Businesses in Melksham have expressed interest in taking over the town’s Post Office, according to Post Office representatives.
Approximately 60 people attended a heated meeting at the Assembly Hall on Wednesday, where the Communication Workers’ Union vowed to continue to oppose plans to relocate the Church Street office.
Members of the public, town councillors and Post Office employees put questions to the Post Office’s representatives, who insisted plans to move the office into another shop in the town would not mean a loss of services.
Speaking after the meeting, Melksham mayor Chris Petty, who chaired the meeting said: “I thought it went well, the people of Melksham got their views out, although it was a poor turnout.
“Hopefully they will take on board what people had to say.”
The Post Office announced earlier this year Melksham was one of 70 of its crown offices being considered for franchising.
Senior stakeholder manager Laura Tarling said: “Post Offices aren’t viable on their own, it’s a widely known fact.
“In order to become more efficient we do need to combine two businesses.”
She also confirmed local businesses have expressed interest in taking on the franchise, but would not state who they were.
Chris Roche of the CWU spoke on behalf of the union, and promised to oppose the plans. He said: “You will not get any of our employees working for the new franchisee, because they will be working for barley above the minimum wage, and they are better than that.
“As part of our campaign we will boycott any organisation that takes over Melksham Crown Post Office. We will organise that boycott, the campaign goes on.”
If a suitable business partner comes forward, a six-week public consultation will then take place, with the new franchisee potentially taking over from April 2014.