SIR – I have always imagined the Royal Mail and the Post Office were intrinsically linked. It appears that I am wrong. I was also under the impression that they were both a form of public service, but again it appears I am mistaken.

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They are both businesses and subject to the ebb and flow of the economic situation and modern day communications. But the closure of many of our post offices in our area is very worrying and is depriving the population of an important service and social link.

We have lost post offices recently in Hordle, Sway, and now we hear that Brockenhurst is to go.  A few years ago there were post offices in Buckland and Woodside.

The post office provides a critical service for all elements of the population but particularly for the elderly. It not only provides a basic postal service, but covers pensions, car tax, cash dispensing and many other elements.

Removal of a post office in many of our areas presents elderly people with a big problem. Many post offices provide a social link for local people as well.

Closures often mean that they will have to travel some distance to acquire the service they need, by car or taxi or bus – but then of course the bus services are also being cut. Incidentally, these journeys to post offices ultimately increase the cost to the individual of the postal service.

Surely the time has come for either the government or local authorities to intercede and stop this rot.

I understand of course they cannot compel a person to run an unproductive business which apparently is what many of the post office owners and employees are experiencing.

This calls for a subsidy from either government or local authorities to keep these important institutions open and provide the service that the local and mainly elderly population desperately deserve and need.

Michael Robjohn, Boldre

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