THE battle to save a Burnley Post Office branch has been won, it was revealed today (WED).

Regional manager Suzanne Richardson announced this morning that plans to move the Pike Hill outlet had been abandoned.

Burnley MP Julie Cooper, who has led the campaign to keep the branch at its current Brownside Road location, said: "This is fantastic news."

But Brunshaw councillor and borough leader Mark Townsend said: "I am disappointed."

In December Post Office bosses proposed to move the outlet 650 metres to The Bottle Stop on Brunshaw Avenue.

The plan provoked a storm of protest despite increasing branch opening hours to 70 hours a week.

Now the company has announced that following a six-week public consultation Pike Hill Post Office will remain at its present location.

It revealed that the main feedback focussed on the distance to the proposed new location being too far for many elderly residents.

The Post Office statement added that comments were made regarding the 'infrequent' bus service.

It promised should opportunities for relocation arise in the future, they would be subject to another public consultation before any decision.

Ms Richardson said: “After careful consideration we have decided not to proceed with the proposed move of Pike Hill Post Office.

"In making our decision, we have taken into account all relevant factors including the impact this would have on customer access to our services, the responses that we received as part of the consultation process and the concerns raised by Citizens Advice.”

Mrs Cooper said: “This is fantastic news!

"I am very pleased to see that Post Office PLC have reached the only fair conclusion.

" My office had been flooded with requests from local residents who, without exception, were opposed to the move.

"Cliviger and Worsthorne residents had already seen their village post offices closed over recent years and many now walk or make a bus journey to Pike Hill on a weekly basis.

"The proposed new site would have meant a two bus journey for some constituents and a walk down one of the steepest residential streets in Burnley for others.

"There were also concerns expressed about the knock-on effect of the overturned move on the other businesses at Pike Hill.

"This is quite an achievement, as Post Office PLC do not often make a U turn of this nature.”

Cllr Townsend said: "I was in favour of the move which would have been a boost to businesses on Brunshaw Avenue.