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Crawley MP urges local charities to apply for share of £3 Million fund

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Crawley charities and community groups are being urged by the town’s MP, Henry Smith, to apply for a share of a £3 million funding pot. The Peoples Postcode Lotterys Dream Fund is looking for charities to apply for funding to bring their dream project to life.

Crawley MP Henry Smith

Henry said;

“The People’s Postcode Lottery’s Dream Fund gives charities the opportunity to be bold and courageous. This is an exciting opportunity for the voluntary sector across Crawley to work together to develop their dream project.

“I urge charities to be creative and ambitious, and remind them to get their applications in before the deadline on 22nd August.”

More news: How choosing NOT to stay in a hotel changed my life

The Dream Fund encourages collaboration between charities and good causes, bringing them together to apply for funding to finance their dream project – an idea they have always wanted to deliver but never had the opportunity to develop.

Funding from the scheme, now in its eighth year, will be offered over two years from 2018. This years prize fund is the largest ever with a top award of £1 million and a total award fund of £3 million.

The Dream Fund has invested more than £7.3 million in 24 projects across Great Britain, with previous winners including Heritage Heroes, a joint project between Canal & River Trust and Help for Heroes, and Missing People’s Child Rescue Alert.

The Postcode Dream Trust is encouraging applications to Dream Fund 2018 from projects that fit within one or more of the charitable purposes which include: supporting families; improving peoples lives through animals; green communities and increasing life chances for young people.

Applications for the Dream Fund are open until Tuesday 22nd August. Winners will be announced in January 2018. Please visit www.postcodedreamtrust.org.uk to apply.

Follow Henry daily via:

 www.twitter.com/HenrySmithUK 
 www.facebook.com/HenrySmith4Crawley 
 www.youtube.com/HenrySmithMP

 www.henrysmith.info

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EXCLUSIVE: Post Office WILL CLOSE whatever consultation says

A source within the Post Office has revealed that despite a public consulation coming up, the decision to close the current location has already been made.

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Despite press releases and statements from the head office of the Post Office asking residents to express their views over the ‘proposed’ closure, it now appears that whatever views come through, a decision of whether to close the site has already been determined.

A source says the consultation is nothing more than lip service to residents.

Speaking to CN24, the source said that all the consultation will look at is ‘how’ the change of venue will work, not ‘if’ or ‘should’ it happen.

“it is an utter betrayal” – Leader of Crawley Council

This will come as a shock to many in the area who rely heavily on the services that are currently offered and will put in doubt any faith over public consultations.

In a letter aimed at the management of the Post Office and sent to CN24, one resident,  Mrs Elmer from Tilgate has expressed her views over the proposed closure.

She writes:

“I am extremely concerned about the possible closure of Crawley Post Office.

I find it very worrying that in a town with a population of over 106,000 the management is considering popping it into a shop in the shopping mall.

The fact that one always has to queue to be served because it is so busy, even though it has at least five stations of service as well as several self service positions, a parcel counter, an external parcel collection office plus a fully trained staff, how is all of that going to fit into WH Smith’s in the Mall?

To park in the Mall you have to pay.

It is not an easy shop to get to, you have to walk half the length of the Mall to get there.
It is not a very large shop and it has a quite dismal atmosphere.

Disabled people would not be able to reach it very easily.

To carry out all the functions the current post office does it would have to enlarge the premises half as much again.

Working on the assumption that it would work on the same premise that the local one in Tilgate does, it will take a month of Sundays to carry out the same amount of work the real post office does.

Will all the staff move over to continue the secure work they carry out?

Please have a serious look at the situation before making a huge mistake.

J Elmer”

But it now seems that this will fall on deaf ears.  CN24 contacted the Post Office press team where a member verbally confirmed that the consultation would be about access to the new site.

Crawley Council Leader Peter Lamb said:

“It is clear now that this was only ever a public relations exercise.  For the thousands of people who will be disadvantaged by this it is an utter betrayal.”

Tilgate Councillor Francis Guidera said:

“The planned post office DOWNGRADE which their PR department is marketing as a move, is bad for the staff, bad for the customers and bad for the town in general.

Our main post office will no longer be able to offer Crown Services going forward and nobody I’ve spoken to is ok with it. I would strongly urge the post office not to go ahead with this.”

A Post Office spokesperson said:

“We would really value and welcome any feedback and comments from you, our customers that can help inform our plans to make changes to Crawley Post Office, particularly on issues like accessibility. And are there any wider other local community issues which you believe could be affected by or affect the proposed move? Please do let us know.

However, the element of our plans that we not seeking feedback is the principle of franchising a branch. This is because the change of management at Crawley Post Office to one that is operated by a retail partner rather than Post Office directly is a commercial decision, and we believe it is the right one in order to sustain Post Office services in communities – not just today, but for the long term too.”

Crawley MP Henry Smith said:

“I’ve got accessibility concerns with the Post Office’s proposals to move their current Boulevard counters to WHSmith’s in County mall and have written to its management to raise these.

If it turns our their consultation – officially still open – is a sham then I will be raising the issue in Parliament.”

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