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Sealand post office layout 'will be safety threat'

Published date: 28 January 2014 |
Published by: Romilly Scragg 
Read more articles by Romilly Scragg  Email reporter


 

A community leader claims changes to Post Office services could spell security problems for staff.

The layout and services at the Garden City Sealand post office in the Spar shop on Welsh Road could be altered as part of a nationwide restructuring.

Under the proposals, opening hours would be extended to 7am to 11pm every day.

But other changes include the loss of a separate, security-screened counter, with Post Office services – including money transfers and account transactions – offered instead from a till on the shop counter.

Flintshire councillor Christine Jones said the proposals risked the safety of staff.

“It’s going to be open like the rest of the shop,” she said.

“How much money passes hands at the post office? It’s wide open. There’ll be no protection.

“We’ve had armed robberies in that Spar. Security is a major issue.”

The Flintshire cabinet member said it was also wrong that residents would lose the ability to conduct their business in confidence. “At the moment the post office is in the corner of the shop where people can go and have privacy,” she said.

“Putting it at the counter – an open counter – would stop all that.

“It’s just wrong. Some people are getting their pensions.

“People need to know they can do their business in confidence. I think it’s disgraceful.”

If the changes go ahead, the nearest post office offering instant travel insurance and a Parcelforce International courier service would be the Queensferry branch.

“My residents aren’t happy at all,” added Cllr Jones.

“Why should they have to walk all the way to Queensferry for these services? We’ve got a local post office that residents can use here.”

A Post Office spokesman said the proposals for extended opening hours at Garden City Sealand would be welcomed by customers.

“Post Office products and services would be available alongside retail transactions, meaning customers don’t have to queue once to send a parcel and again to buy a newspaper,” the spokesman said.

“With regard to the new counter, the safety and privacy of customers and staff has been taken into account and we believe all concerned will appreciate the new way of working should the proposals go ahead.”

Residents have until February 4 to respond to the proposals.

Cllr Jones urged people to make their views known online at postofficeviews.
co.uk or by emailing comments@postoffice.co.uk

Anyone visiting the website will be asked to enter the Post Office branch code 34761499.

For more news from across the region visit newsnorthwales.co.uk

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