We have a challenge in East Renfrewshire, with the number of Post Office closures across various communities over recent times. This causes inconvenience and worse for local people and is particularly challenging for those who are less mobile or rely on the PO for access to cash. Because of this, I have been in correspondence with the post office and would like to see them be significantly more proactive in seeking replacement Postmasters. A simple advert on their website does not do the job.
In addition, I recently joined the All Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Post Offices, and spoke to a local Postmaster who was kind enough to talk me through their experiences and the many flaws in the current system. There is a real urgency in ensuring that the business model works to make sure that Post Offices are, and remain, viable businesses. I secured an oral question today, where, as you can see from the image, I intended to ask about this. Regrettably, the Speaker moved business on before he got to my question. I will need to seek another opportunity to raise this.
In the meantime, the APPG has been hard at work pressing for a resolution to the horizon scandal, which has seen Postmasters in terrible situations, and some even – wrongly – jailed – because of the flawed accounting system in place. It is no wonder at all that we cannot secure enough Post Offices when people have been treated so disgracefully. I am pleased to learn today that a judge-led enquiry, is to look at the issues surrounding Horizon, which must be put to bed if we are to see a clearer and more secure future for our Post Offices.
You can read more here: https://www.nwemail.co.uk/.../18756232.business.../