Fears for future of Post Office

Elms Farm Butchery and Winchelsea Farm Kitchen. SUS-140503-144508001
Elms Farm Butchery and Winchelsea Farm Kitchen. SUS-140503-144508001

THERE was confusion over the future of Winchelsea’s Post Office this week.

The Post Office was saved in 2004 after a group of local residents came up with a rescue package to find a new home for it in Castle Street, next the The Little Shop.

But now the owners of the current premises, who also own Winchelsea Farm Kitchen, say they need the building back.

One upset resident said: ”We were told the closure is the decision of Post Office Ltd and part of a programme of closures that include the sub post offices at Pett and Northiam.

“However, when we enquired we were told there was no planned programme of closures.

“It has also been discovered that the sub post office at Pett is not being closed but sold as a going concern by the retiring postmaster.

“The sub post office, like the Little Shop, was sold to Winchelsea Farm Foods when their shared building was sold to A&S Rumsey Ltd in 2007. It was moved into the Matchbox House, which has otherwise been kept empty.

“We understand that it costs £7,000 to transfer the post office, due to the safe and alarms having to be re-installed, and the new owners were not prepared to pay this.

“A group of people, some of who were involved in saving the Post Office in 2004 are working hard to find a solution and have offered to pay the £7,000.”

A spokesperson for Winchelsea Farm Kitchen said: “We would like to see the Post Office moved here.

“The matter has to be negotiated between Post Office Counters and the post mistress and we are unable to get involved in that.”