Two local post offices are closing: how can I do my bit to help save them?


(Chloe Grice) #1

Hi all, I work from home with my little Etsy shop and my sole contact with the outside world is the weekly trip to the supermarket, the bakery and my trips to the post office, where I always stop by and pass the time of day with the lady who works there.

Today she told me that she has been told that her office will be closing in a month’s time; not only hers, but the second nearest office to me will also be closing the month after. She’s been told that she hasn’t ‘got the right’ to speak to anyone about it, or to warn her clients that it will be happening, but she is so angry about it that she is talking to us all individually and encouraging us to do what we can to voice our opinion.

Like so many rural villages in the UK, people in isolated communities here in France rely on their local post office as a point of contact and each closure is a little death to the way of life in the country. If we lose these two bureaux, the majority of us will be forced to drive a good distance further to the main town, where the service is busy, with long queues and no bavaderie, let alone the simple problem of parking in the town centre.

What I need your help with is who I can write to about my feelings about this & how badly it will affect the community: should I write to the village mayor (it’s not my own village - ours disappeared long before I arrived) directly? What about starting a petition? How likely is that to be well-received by people? I think the woman who runs the butcher’s in the same commune is trying to get people to react too. I was even thinking of making some posters to put on the post office building, asking people to spread the word - is this feasible? I don’t want to actually annoy anyone, but I feel I have to do something.

Any ideas, please? Has anyone had any experience of something like this? Any advice would be appreciated, thanks.


(Peter Goble) #2

Our local post office closed this nonth, despite a petition which was available in the Mairie itself, on the counter, for people to sign. I didn’t see it in any of the local ships or businesses, though.

A new Poste facility has been situated in the Mairie itself, but I’m not sure what the hours will be, nor who will staff it. Not the ‘post-mistress’ who ran La Poste, I asked her and she smilingly said “not me”.


(stella wood) #3

When La Poste decided to close our PO… the Mairie took things in hand… well, they provide the building and I think the PO pay the lovely lady’s wages to continue offering us her smiling, helpful postal service… 5 days a week… mornings only… but that is enough.

Phew works well… and we use it as much as possible…

We buy stamps from her, rather than the prestamped packs of envelopes offered in shops and elsewhere… thus she is seen to be active.

Village life is already under threat… we must fight on… :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye::relaxed::relaxed:


(stella wood) #4

I’ve just asked the question at my Mairie.

When La Poste decide to shut a PO in a small village or wherever… the Mairie can take over… The Mairie undertakes to provide an establishment and become the employer of the La Poste Staff who would otherwise be redundant.

… and La Poste gives an amount to the Mairie to help cover the costs entailed…

Our Mairie simply stopped charging La Poste rent for the office it was using (so didn’t even have to move the equipment to a new site) … and our lovely Post Office Cashier/Worker is now a Employee of the Mairie…(she is trained by La Poste… :relaxed: and kept up to date with all new innovations)


(Chloe Grice) #5

Wonderful, Stella! Thank you so much for enquiring about it for me: I will arm myself with this info when I go back to see my La Poste lady… and I couldn’t agree more: it will be such a big loss to the community if she and the other little bureau closes. The village has a retirement home and a large population of elderly people who rely on these places for contact with the outside world as well as people like me who are home alone all day. I would be heartbroken if she were to go!