Petition launched to prevent axe from falling on town’s delivery office

Todmorden delivery and sorting office. Coun David Tattersall, Mike Hatfield, Diana Tremayne, Beth Paramor and Andt Hollis.
Todmorden delivery and sorting office. Coun David Tattersall, Mike Hatfield, Diana Tremayne, Beth Paramor and Andt Hollis.

A petition has been set up following concerns over the future of Todmorden’s Royal Mail delivery office.

The issue came to light in July of last year when Royal Mail confirmed the move of the office, which currently operates at Rise Lane, was being considered as a way to improve efficiency.

Todmorden Town Council says a number of assurances were made by the delivery company, but since then has received “very little communication”.

Councillors have now penned an open letter to Calder Valley MP Craig Whittaker, calling on him to write to Royal Mail’s CEO to confirm those assurances will be honoured.

The letter states: “Todmorden Town Council is writing this open letter to you, as Todmorden’s Member of Parliament, in order to inform and bring awareness to the potential closure of the sorting office.

“The town council believes the closure of the sorting office will have a detrimental impact on the residents of Todmorden.

“There are serious concerns that residents will have to travel to Rochdale sorting office in order to collect letters and parcels and there may be a number of job losses in the town as a result of the closure.”

It goes on to say: “The town council has previously been given a number of assurances from Royal Mail that in the event of the closure of the sorting office, that the main Post Office in Bramsche Square would be used as a place for resident’s to collect parcels, and that the current sorting office staff would be offered alternative employment with a relocation package.

“Since these assurances were given to the town council, the council has received very little communication with Royal Mail and the Communication Workers Union has since sent correspondence contradicting the assurances Royal Mail had previously given the council.”

Mr Whittaker declined to comment further at present and said he was currently waiting for clarification from Royal Mail.

A letter sent to Todmorden Town Council on September 23, from Royal Mail’s CEO Moya Green, states that no decision has been made and an “in-depth feasibility study” was ongoing. The Communication Workers Union (CWU) says consultation will end in October, but believes the plan is to relocate all staff from Todmorden and Bacup to Rochdale.

Saf Khan, from the CWU’s North West No 1 branch, said: “The extra time to travel to Todmorden from Rochdale would make delivery of mail later then currently provided.

“There are major concerns over what will happen to the collection of mail and parcels currently collected in Todmorden. Royal Mail are hoping the local post office will agree to a collection system for customers. If this is not feasible to the Post Office network, then all items would have to be collected from Rochdale. This is a short-sighted plan which could be cancelled by a local post office in the future. Members currently go the extra mile for the customers in Todmorden and are against the closure.”

The CWU is now calling on Todmorden residents to support its Keep Your Post Local campaign. There will be union representation at a town council meeting next month.

View and sign the petition here: www.change.org/p/moya-greene-stop-the-closure-of-royal-mail-delivery-office-in-todmorden