Importance of Portlaoise mail centre highlighted after RTÉ Christmas report

Conor Ganly

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Conor Ganly

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news@leinsterexpress.ie

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Portlaoise Mail centre.

A Laois TD has highlighted the importance of the mail centre in Portlaoise which was the subject of a special Christmas report by RTÉ.

The RTÉ report said An Post is reporting well over twice the normal volume of mail and parcel traffic this Christmas. Much of it was handled by its Portlaoise centre which was described as being is one of the company's busiest mail centres in Ireland and a hub for international parcel traffic.

Teresa Mannion reported that workers at At Post centres worked round the clock shifts - sorting and handling Christmas cards, letters and gifts to ensure they reach their destinations in plenty of time.

Sinn Féin TD Brian Stanley questioned the CEO of An Post before an Oireachtas Committee and raised the issue of the Post Office Network as well as the importance of the mail centres .

In relation to the Portlaoise Mail Centre he stated the Mail Centres are a very important pillar of the post office network especially the Portlaoise centre.

“A new parcel centre has been built at Portlaoise. The new N80 will pass its front door when the final part of the route is completed.

"It is only 1km from both the M7 and M8 motorways and it is within easy reach of the main rail line. The Portlaoise Centre is on a key transport hub.”

“It employs over 200 people in Portlaoise with 180 extra staff during the Christmas period. It also has the customs facility in Portlaoise,” he said.

“The continued uncertainty around the Mail Centres cannot continue and a decision needs to be made on their retention.

"Portlaoise Mail Centre is important to both the people and economy in Co Laois and is a substantial facility that would be detrimental to the town if lost.”

Deputy Stanley said his party is very concerned about future of the post office network in rural Ireland.

"We have argued for the expansion of services provided by post offices, such as small scale banking and government services such as motor tax renewal that will bring in a volume of business that also adds to the social life in rural Ireland. This is essential to secure their future,” he said.