First Post Office 24 hour branch opens in London
A new Post Office 24 hour branch has opened on New Oxford Street in London and is the first of 25 planned new locations in the capital. The Post Office service on New Oxford Street, is based inside The Convenience Store, and is being run by Mr Amarjit Singh Rakhra.
“I’m very pleased to be offering Post Office services from my store – this is an opportunity to provide my customers with a real range of services at a time that suits them, whether that’s early in the morning or late at night. From commuters to tourists, the branch is well placed to serve a variety of people: they can come in to pick up their groceries, as well as send postcards to family and friends, pick up their travel money and collect or return their online shopping.”
– Mr Amarjit Singh Rakhra, New Oxford Street Post Office
Dozens of newly modernised branches are already open for longer in the city, and the new service – which is the only one in London open for 24 hours, 7 days a week – joins these, along with around 25 new Post Offices which will open in central London over the next 12 months. This will boost the number of Post Offices in the area from around 70 to almost 100 branches.
“Central London’s fast-growing urban population and commuter presence means we need to extend our services through longer hours and more branches. In one of the busiest locations for online shopping collection and returns in the UK, our customers want flexible, convenient access not only to mails services, but also to things like every day banking and travel money.”
– Debbie Smith, new Chief Executive of Retail at the Post Office
For Londoners the city never really sleeps so the convenience of being able to send post or indeed to collect parcels from a Post Office 24 hour branch at any time of the day or night is definitely attractive as is the proximity of a Post Office to your home or work. Millions of workers start or finish work at all hours of the day or night so being able to drop into a Post Office in the middle of the night on the way to or from home makes sense.
“These openings are part of a wider strategy to ensure that Post Office services are available where our customers need and want them – and with millions of commuters visiting London every day, and the city’s population growing at more than twice the rate of other parts of the UK, it’s clear that the number of Post Offices needs to increase too, to give customers access to the best possible service. Through launching these new outlets, the Post Office aims to encourage new customers to use its services by providing even greater convenience and choice as to where, when and how people access Post Office services.”
– The Post Office
Many Post Office branches offer Drop & Go, a fast drop mail service which enables small businesses to send online orders and samples to their customers across the country and around the globe.
Since 2012 the Post Office has been modernising its network, transforming over 7500 into new modern outlets offering longer hours, over 4000 are open 7 days a week. As result of this investment its network of 11,600 of branches is now at its most stable for decade – and with more branches than all the main UK banks combined, Post Offices are proving particularly vital where banks no longer exist.
Photo Credit: Google Maps
In the 60s a big fuss was made when the trafalgar Square PO went 24 Hours. I remember going there several times to send post (but I was not doing eBay back then!!) Interestingly I never noticed when it finished so back then there was no demand I guess. Our local PO in Leicestershire is open from 6 a m until 10 p m but my focus really is on the 4.45 Royal Mail collection time. Now if Royal Mail went 24 hours then that would be a revolution.
Well tonight (Sunday 21 Jan 2018) at 22:10, I visited this so called 24 Hour Post Office to find 2 disinterested staff behind the Counter. It took at least a minute to get noticed, acknowledged and asked how could I be helped (as they were so keen on chatting with each other)
Despite an A-Board Outside with Red & White Balloons attached and on one side saying “Post Office – Open” and the other side listing services offered, it transpires that the Post Office Counter is yet to become operational as the staff are not yet trained on the Post Office Horizon Computer System and training will be taking a further 2 weeks!!
They cannot even take in Pre-Paid items as they have no Collections set up yet!!
So a wasted journey from South London for me.
Don’t bother going there until it can be established that the Post Office side is actually up and running, which according to an article in Talking Retail it would appear to have been.
There used to be a 24 Hour service at the Trafalgar Square Charing Cross Branch and if the Post Office was commited to providing such a service should seek to re-establish that location as a 24 Hour operation which it once was and which is a proper Post Office, not a window in a Convenience Store!!