Strachur Post Office under threat of closure

This Friday and Saturday residents in Strachur were shocked to find that it was decided last week to cut the number of days the Strachur post office would be open from 6 days to 3.

Not only that, but that the facility, which serves over 800 people in Strachur, and a wider populations of thousands in North Cowal, was under threat of permanent closure.

Locals have been expressing their displeasure that the plans to reduce opening times prior to potential closure have been rushed into place and no consultation, or indeed wider communication with the community has been entered into either by the new owners of the shop or the Post Office themselves.

Strachur has a significant older community which depend upon this rural post office to claim benefits and to bank, and its withdrawal will leave them needing to make a weekly 17 mile each-way trip to Sandbank and back – if that is, as is rumoured, the Sandbank post office is reopened.

It transpires that the previous owner of the Strachur Post Office resisted plans by the Post Office itself to close the facility in Strachur for her 11 year tenure, and by doing so ensured that a critical community service was maintained. It looks as if the new owners, who have been running the business now for several months, have not been as aware of the essential function this rural post office fulfils and therefore not resisted as strongly the Post Office’s desire to close the service.

Irate locals are making their views known both to the owners of the shop and also the Post Office, essential if the case is to be made for the Post Office to remain open.

Strachur Post Office is presently open Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.

 

 

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28 Responses to Strachur Post Office under threat of closure

  1. This has been very badly handled indeed. I use this Post Office 4-5 times a week and its closure has huge financial repercussions for my business, almost to the point that I’ll need to relocate both business and home to ensure that I can continue. Do the Post Office really have any care for the communities they serve? Are they aware that everytime they close post offices they are contributing to rural depopulation and decline? Looks doubtful given this.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 18 Thumb down 3

  2. When in fact the various parties should focus their energies on working together to get the best for local businesses, like Charles’. That blame game never won any jobs.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 4

  3. I read with alarming frequency stories like this of PO branches closing or reducing hours, at the root cause of these closures and reduction in hours is the funding mechanism used to pay Postmasters, Postmasters need paying, its an easy concept to understand, if you do not pay them sufficiently then why is anyone surprised if the Postmasters gives up or cuts his cloth with the hours he opens his PO service. If you wish to blame politicians, then blame them for consistently refusing to become involved in the mechanisms used to pay Postmasters, time and time again Politicians keep saying this is a matter for the Post Office, and so the Post Office gets away with paying as little as they can, whilst keeping the lions share for central costs and directors bonuses. Until the two Parliaments tackle this issue and get down into the detail then Scotland will continue to lose PO branches

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 13 Thumb down 1

  4. The benefit of the Union.
    PO’s legislation is governed by Westminster.

    No one to blame but them and their doctrine to privatise which cruelly penalises the small business and rural areas to benefit big business and their profits.

    Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 9

    • Stop this silly pretence that nothing will ever close once Alex Salmond is in charge of everything .
      Campbeltown Hospital is losing eleven of it’s 32 beds under the SNP and small rural communities are losing their courts in places such as Rothesay under the SNP .
      Again it’s obvious this constituency needs a local representative to speak up for the people , not a minister more interested in his own career .

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 13 Thumb down 9

      • 1. Alex Salmond will not “be in charge of everything” – it will be the Scottish Parlament
        2. If the Scottish Parlament were in control of ALL of our finances I’m sure that we would not have situations like this in the NHS. The court system was designed round about the 18th century – isn’t it time it was brought up-to-date?

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 4

      • Inlay you are factually wrong.
        AS is not responsible for the micromanagement of hospital beds as you know . Several months ago I suggested you speak to the Board etc. Did you do so?
        I also made the comment that most people prefer to stay in their own home rather than remain in hospital too long. I rather my father would stay in a wee “but and Ben” in Oban than the hospital . The hospital in your home toon of C’town remains open with enough beds.
        If Struan lodge remains open which your local Cllr Semple and Newsies pals Robb and Semple with Tory help are trying to close maybe that would be a better use of scarce resources and can also be used for respite care

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

    • I told you that the SNP will blame Westminster, didn’t I? (no. 3 above)

      No doubt, in the event of a post independent Scotland, and when another party wins the Scottish general election and has to clear up the mess left by the SNP, the SNP will blame the incoming government for trying to clear up their mess. The SNP always blame someone else.

      What they can’t do in Argyll is blame someone else for the mess caused by their own councillors – although they are trying very hard to deflect away from the problem; perceiving it to be a minor issue. Unbelievable!

      Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 10 Thumb down 7

      • Well it is isn’t it–

        Lets talk of the great father of the democracy’s at Westminster.

        You did not answer— Who is responsible for the Royal Mail and PO’s?

        You know the answer and it aint Holyrood or the SNP

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 9 Thumb down 7

      • Your on a wee rant because you cannot bare that the responsibility lies at Westminster NOW not in 2014 –

        Hot debate. What do you think? Thumb up 6 Thumb down 10

  5. Can someone please explain how the new Sandbank P.O. Can be open 7 days a week, and until late at night, and places like Strachur can’t? Sandbank like Strachur is just a small village albeit has more houses than Strachur, but not necessary more people using the shop, as Dunoon is just a 5 minute drive away.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 2

  6. Perhaps at Sandbank they’re hoping that better opening hours will give it a real boost. I for one would prefer to be able to use a post office in the evenings.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  7. The PO at Sandbank will NOT be open that length of time. The shop might be – but not the PO. The opening hours of the post office are determined by Post Office Ltd not the shop owner.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 4

  8. Simon, Not sure where I read it, but yes, the PO counter WILL be open 7 days, and from early to late. I’m also sure that the previous Sandbank PO had long opening hours as well. Will try and find the story.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • DL
      I used to drive from Dunoon to use this p/o because it stayed open late.
      Sandbank post office used to stay open until 9pm, that is if the particular member of staff on at the time knew how to operate system and process parcels etc., One or two of the less experienced could provide a very basic service but definitely better than no later service at all.
      Like our banks, most post office’s opening times don’t always suit the 9-5 working day so looking forward to Sandbank providing the later service.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  9. From the Dunoon Observer site –
    Sandbank Post Office will have a serving point at the retail counter which will be available during shop opening hours. This is a new concept for delivering Post Office services with Post Office products and services available alongside retail transactions during shop opening hours.

    The new opening hours will be 6am-9pm Monday to Saturday and 7.30am-9pm on Sundays – more than 52 hours per week.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    • I wonder if Tesco’s listening? – I’m sure they see a post office as a useful lever to increase their footfall, and maybe decrease the footfall in town centres, eg Oban.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  10. Yes, the extended hours are great, but how can Sandbank offer such a service when a large supermarket PO closes at 5.30, and Strachur is reduced to a few days a week?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

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