SOUTH Down MP Margaret Ritchie (SDLP) has asked the UK under-Secretary of State for Business to back rural postal services as she outlined plans for the future of the Post Office in a statement to the House of Commons.
Speaking from Westminster Ms Ritchie said: “Rural post offices may not be the most profitable but they are perhaps the most essential, especially for people living in more remote areas. In these areas they are at the heart of economic and social life in the community.
“I do not deny the need for modernisation but this must involve giving rural post offices a wider range of services. With a spate of bank branch closures in rural areas people are even more reliant on the Post Office and the modernisation programme should reflect this in enabling the post office to provide consumers with banking options, no matter who they bank with. I was pleased to hear the Minister give assurances that she supports this.
“However, there remain specific issues in Northern Ireland that need to be considered and again I am pleased that the Minister has agreed to look into this.”