Post Offices on the increase
THE numbers of community Post Offices around Exmouth may be soon on the up, after a property agent responsible for selling the Brixington branch to new owners says he has seen increased interest.
THE numbers of community Post Offices around Exmouth may be soon on the up, after a property agent responsible for selling the Brixington branch to new owners says he has seen 'increased' interest.
For 20 years small branches were gradually forced to close because they were deemed unprofitable.
This led to the closure branches like Greenway Lane in Budleigh Salterton and St Andrews Road, Exmouth.
But Exeter-based Christie + Co, who facilitated the sale of Brixington Post Office last month, said that over the last six months they had seen increased interest from businesses who wanted to integrate postal services into existing stores.
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Last year, he said, taking on a Post Office was considered a risk because uncertainty over the future of the �1 billion card accounts led to stagnation in sales and a drop in demand.
But the Government's decision in November to cancel the tendering process led to the contract remaining with the Post Office until 2015 - in one move making the prospect of running a Post Office more appealing.
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Paul Heather of Christie + Co said: "Over the last six months interest...in acquiring a Post Office has picked up with a number of businesses across the South West changing hands.
"The...2008 closure programme has also further enhanced the sense of security across the ...network and revived the appeal of running a post office business."
An example of this, he said, was the seamless transition the Brixington branch changed hands from retiring postmaster Ken Brighton, who had operated the business for 12 years with his wife Lorraine, to David and Lucy Calland, managers of Budgens next door.