The fight to save Lancing’s Post Office is gaining momentum as councillors voted to seek to turn the building into an asset of community value.
The Post Office announced it was seeking a franchise partner for its North Road branch last month, which councillors believe will see the service move from its current location.
It ties the building to the community and gives the community a stake in itCouncillor Lee Cowen
Making the building an asset of community value would mean that residents would be alerted to any plans to sell the building, said councillor Lee Cowen, who proposed to make the application.
“It ties the building to the community and gives the community a stake in it,” he said.
It also allows the community to bid on it – were it to be put up for sale.
For an application to be accepted, it must be proven that the building is used to further the social wellbeing or interests of the community and could do so in the future.
The parish council’s attempt to make the Luxor building an asset last year was unsuccessful because it had been empty for so long.
Meanwhile, campaign efforts to keep the Post Office in its current building have continued, with paper petitions amassing ‘hundreds’ of signatures, according to Mr Cowen.
These are available to sign at the Adur Voluntary Action shop, the parish hall, Wilmshurst Pharmacy and several charity shops.
An online petition gained almost a thousand signatures in less than 24 hours.
Mr Cowen is planning a rally at the Post Office on Saturday, February 18, where he hopes residents will come with placards and ‘make a bit of noise.’
Tim Loughton, MP for East Worthing and Shoreham, has arranged for councillors to be given a briefing by Post Office representatives on Thursday. Feburary 23.
In a letter to the parish council, the Post Office said it sought a franchise partner to provide the service from the existing building or alternative premises, adding that the majority of the branch network operates from a retail business.
An online petition to save the Post Office can be found here.
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