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Post Office Network

Part of Business of the House – in the House of Commons at 12:24 pm on 14th December 2006.

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Photo of Michael Weir Michael Weir Shadow Spokesperson (Work and Pensions), Shadow Spokesperson (Trade and Industry) 12:24 pm, 14th December 2006

It is disingenuous of the Secretary of State to say that post offices are uneconomic because people are not using them. People are not using them as a direct result of Government policy. Many of my constituents felt forced to give up having their benefits paid into post offices. He says that, historically, branches were located where the sub-postmasters chose to set up in business. Does he accept that much of the problem with the current network stems from the Post Office urban regeneration programme, where the Post Office went out and appeared to say, "We have a shedload of money. Who wants to give up?" If under the new scheme—