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Post Office Closures

Part of Opposition Day — [7th Allotted Day] – in the House of Commons at 2:11 pm on 19th March 2008.

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Photo of James Paice James Paice Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) 2:11 pm, 19th March 2008

I am grateful to the Secretary of State for giving way, albeit with reluctance. The serious point is that the consultation concerns which post offices to close, and my hon. Friend Alan Duncan made the crucial point that if, as a result of consultation, local pressure and new figures, it is decided not to close a post office, the policy that the Secretary of State is pursuing means that somewhere that is not on the original hit list will go on it. Will he explain to the House how that can be justified, and how the notion of the consultation being genuine can be correct if we are talking about such a trade-off? If it is possible to prove that a specific post office has a justified future and is viable, surely that should be the end of the matter.

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