THE sudden announcement that a town’s Post Office will close has shocked and disappointed customers and local politicians.

This week they were told the Brierfield branch, currently in the shop of the petrol station on Colne Road, would shut temporarily on Wednesday.

Post Office bosses have promised the outlet will reopen as soon as a new postmaster and location can be found.

Pendle MP Conservative Andrew Stephenson said the temporary closure was ‘disappointing’ while local Labour councillors described the sudden announcement as ‘totally unacceptable’.

A letter told regular customers: “We are writing to inform you that, regrettably, following the resignation of the postmaster and withdrawal of the premises for Post Office use, the above branch will be closing temporarily on Wednesday, September 25 at 17:30.”

Cllr Mohammed Iqbal, the leader of Pendle Borough and the town’s county councillor, said: “It is wrong for post office bosses to give local people a week’s notice before withdrawal of services in Brierfield. I have asked for an urgent meeting with Post Office management to discuss this service.”

Brierfield Area Committee chairman Cllr Naeem Ashraf, said “This is yet another service being taken away from Brierfield and is totally unacceptable.”

Reedley Ward’s Cllr Mohammed Hanif said: “I know of local people including elderly and disabled residents who cannot travel elsewhere to use post office services.”

Mr Stephenson said, “Clearly this will be disappointing news for many residents for whom the Post Office provides an invaluable service. I will do everything I can to ensure a Post Office provision is returned to Brierfield as quickly as possible. The temporary closure will be of concern to many.”

A Post Office spokeswoman said: “We would like to apologise for any inconvenience caused by the temporary closure of Brierfield Post Office following the resignation of the postmaster and withdrawal of premises for Post Office use.

“The branch is run by an independent retailer who will also close their shop at the same time. We would like to reassure customers that we will be working hard to restore services to them as soon as possible."

Alternative branches include Nelson Post Office in Place De Creil and Hillingdon Post Office in Underley Street, Burnley.