“A village post office is much more to the people of rural Ireland than just a place to collect pensions and buy stamps”

13 December 2017
By Bryan Smyth

West Cork TD Michael Collins (Independent) has welcomed the announcement that Bantry has been chosen as one of just three sites across the country for a new An Post online delivery trial, which aims to redevelop and update the national post office network.

‘This is great news not only for Bantry but for the many rural post offices that are the backbone for communities in West Cork. As I have said on countless occasions, we must ensure that our rural post offices can offer customers much more services and that they can sustain our communities well in the future,’ Deputy Collins said.

The new An Post trail ‘e-local’, which will begin in Bantry in January 2018 will see a range of new services designed to help local businesses have an increased online presence with local customers and will enhance the deliveries of good and products.

‘This is a welcome first step,’ Deputy Collins continued. If a customer of an e-local retailer in the Bantry catchment area’ orders something before 4pm, they will have it delivered with their mail the next morning.

The vocal West Cork TD Michael Collins (Ind)

‘There are other services, which An Post are proposing to roll out across the country when the trails are completed in Bantry. These will include financial services along the lines of a community banking and much-needed access to more government services.’

This should just be a starting point for An Post to maintain and enhance the rural post offices, many of which are highlighted for closure, across West Cork,’ Deputy Collins said. A village post office is much more to the people of rural Ireland than just a place to collect pensions and buy stamps and with these trials, I am certain that the future of our post offices can be secured.’

I am delighted that the Minister for Communication, Denis Naughten’s visit to West Cork during the summer, where I was able to impress on him the importance of the local post office network, has resulted in Bantry being chosen for this e-local project. I will continue to work tirelessly to ensure that the people of West Cork can avail of the services others in more urban areas take for granted,’ Deputy Collins said.

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