Residents in Ballacolla will have to wait at least another two weeks to hear An Post’s decision on the future of their local post office.
A delegation from the village went to the Dáil last week to meet with Enda Kelly and Angus Laverty from An Post. The delegation included Michael Gorman, Sheila Coonan, John Finlay and Michael G Phelan.
Also present at the meeting were Sean Fleming TD, Brian Stanley TD and Charlie Flanagan TD. Speaking to the Leinster Express afterwards, Mr Phelan, a local election candidate (FF), said that he was happy with how the meeting went.
“We put our case to An Post very well. Mr Kelly said that he visited Ballacolla last Saturday. So far 17 submissions have been made from people looking to take over the business”.
A petition of signatures to keep the post office open was also handed over to the post office representatives.
Mr Phelan added: “The proprietor is willing to rent out the premises, and the post office will still be intact. The security arrangements are all still there. It is down to An Post to make the decision now”.
Local election candidate John Finlay (FG) noted that a number of individuals in the Ballacolla area had expressed a keen interest in tendering for the position of post master/mistress and was hopeful that An Post would continue to honour their commitment to maintain the post office in Ballacolla.
Following the meeting Deputy Stanley said: “I urged An Post to keep this vital local service open. Ballacolla post office caters for a large catchment area that includes those villages where post offices have been closed such as Clough, Aghaboe and Shanahoe. The post office in Ballacolla is now more important than ever to the area.
“It’s a viable business and my information is that there are interested parties that would take it on and make it a success. The population has increased in recent years, including rural areas such as this. Now that the consultation process is over An Post should advertise the contract as quickly as possible. The post mistress is due to retire on May 31 and it’s vital that the service continues. I welcome the confirmation from An Post that they received expressions of interest from people to take over.”