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Post Office Closures

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:16 pm on 15th May 2002.

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Photo of Mr Richard Page Mr Richard Page Conservative, South West Hertfordshire 5:16 pm, 15th May 2002

The hon. Lady is absolutely right. In saying what she says, she pays tribute to an intensive, clever, smart and focused campaign by the Union of Communication Workers, in which it suggested that any form of privatisation would involve losing sub-post offices. It so confused the issue in people's minds—it was not the clearest of explanations—that they were very unhappy about going forward.

I pay tribute to the union: as a political exercise, it did a fantastic job. Whenever I can, I pay tribute to the Minister for Employment Relations, Industry and the Regions who used to be the general secretary of that union, for the skill with which he conducted that campaign. I am prepared to do that time and again; he did a fantastic job. The campaign misled the people of this country and it set our Post Office back years, but he won, and perhaps the Labour party thinks that that is all that counts.