Fight to get a Post Office service in Brede pays off

Broad Oak, Brede, General Store. 08-01-13
Broad Oak, Brede, General Store. 08-01-13

BREDE and Broad Oak could soon be getting much needed postal services after a long-running village campaign.

Hundreds of people in the village have signed a petition calling for the reinstatement of services in a two year fight.

Now it looks as though they may have won some concession with a full postal service due to operate from Broad Oak General Store every Friday starting from January 25.

But campaigners have said it is now up to people in the village to use the service if they want to keep it.

Broad Oak General Store lost its post office counter years ago after a post master who rented part of the shop decided it was not economically viable.

Now a new service called Post Office Local allows shop owners to apply to offer services from the same general counter they use for customers.

The campaign suffered a blow last year when the owner of the store applied to offer the services but was told by the Post Office that he did not meet the criteria.

Campaigner and villager Peter Stephens said: “There is a long process to go through to meet security criteria and other conditions. The Post Office do not give reasons why they turn down an applicant.

“Now at last we have a very limited outreach service being set up by the lady who runs Harrow Stores on the Ridge at Hastings. She will be able to offer a full postal service for two hours on a Friday.

“We really want to get the message out and encourage people to support and use the service.

This is a very important service for the village. We have an elderly population here, many of who do not drive, and a poor bus service. The nearest Post Office is in Rye.

“The parish council has been supporting this campaign and hundreds of people in the village have signed a petition.

The Rye area has been hit by a number of Post Office closures in recent years including the main Post Office at Winchelsea and at Tilling Green.