A PUBLIC consultation has been launched to discuss plans to move a Hyndburn post office.

The West End Post Office in Blackburn Road, Oswaldtwistle, is set to move into the Spar Store, in Thwaites Road - a distance of 750 metres away.

The current postmaster, Bill Aspin, said he wants to retire, and the only way to keep a post office in the area is to move it into the Spar.

The 67-year-old, who has had the post office for 17 years, said: “It’s the best thing that could have happened, because the new branch will be open for much longer.

“At the minute, when people are going to work I’m not open, and when they’re coming home I’ve already shut. Now they will be able to post their parcels whenever they want.”

A post office spokesman said the move would see it open from 6am to 10pm seven days a week, and was part of a ‘major modernisation programme’ across the network.

Regional network manager for Central England, Adrian Wales, said: “We understand how important having a Post Office is to residents in Oswaldtwistle and we are confident that this new modern Post Office service will meet the needs of the local community and secure services for the future.”

Local councillor Brian Roberts said he had no strong views about the move and could see both advantages and disadvantages.

The Conservative councillor said: “It’s very much up to the residents and the postmaster. I don’t know if residents will be in favour. It does save a lot of people in Blackburn Road from having to travel. It also depends how reliable the bus service will be.”

“At the end of the day, the important thing is we are retaining the post office.”

Owner of the Spar, Nigel Masters, said: “From the customers’ point of view, it would be a good move. It would extend the opening hours and would improve accessibility.”

Customers can take part in the six-week-long consultation, which ends on April 16, by sending a letter to: Freepost, Your Comments, Post Office Ltd. Alternatively, call 08457 22 33 44, textphone 08457 22 33 55, or you can also email comments@postoffice.co.uk.

An online questionnaire is at www.postofficeviews.co.uk using branch code 380427.