Sub-post Offices

Part of Opposition Day – in the House of Commons at 4:09 pm on 12th April 2000.

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Photo of Stephen Byers Stephen Byers Secretary of State, Department of Trade and Industry 4:09 pm, 12th April 2000

I will let the hon. Gentleman into the debate in a moment. I know his views, which he has stated clearly. He is a man of principle on these matters and it will be useful for the House to hear his views. They may be quite helpful to me, too, so I shall be more than happy to give way in a moment.

The Postal Services Bill gives the Post Office greater commercial freedom. The real question is whether the Post Office will want to support the social role that the post office network can play. That is a real issue, and the Government intend to address it. In a moment, I shall inform the House about how we might do that, but I am sure that hon. Members will want to hear from the hon. Member for Gainsborough first.