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Post Office shuns Crawley public meeting opposing closure

The public meeting was held as a result of the planned closure where both residents and politicians pledged to oppose it.

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Over the weekend, Crawley residents and Post Office workers took part in a public meeting with local councillors, Crawley’s MP Henry Smith, Council Leader Peter Lamb, and a Communication Workers Union representative, Karl Stewart, to discuss the planned closure of Crawley town centre’s Crown Post Office.

No representative from Post Office Management was present at the meeting, and this was remarked upon frequently by members of the panel and the audience. It emerged that the Post Office had declined an invitation to attend, having apparently attended another public meeting on the subject already.

Post Office management have stated elsewhere that all current Post Office Services will be relocated to WHSmith’s in Crawley’s County Mall, however the meeting to threw significant doubt on that claim, citing the recent closure and relocation of Horsham’s Crown Post Office into the Horsham WHSmiths. In that relocation key Post Office responsibilities were not carried over because WHSmith’s is a company not owned by the Crown.

WHSmith’s, the preferred partner of The Post Office, has been voted the worst High Street retailer in 8 of the last 9 years in the respected Which? Magazine.

Henry Smith MP was only available to attend the first part of the meeting as he had another long-standing scheduled engagement elsewhere, but audience members made sure to pose questions to him before he left.

All those present in the room who spoke were unanimous in their support for the retention of the boulevard’s Crown Post Office, and in their opposition to the planned closure.

Cllr Michael Jones on Twitter said this:

“We invited the management of the Post Office to come to our meeting in Crawley about losing the crown post office, but they refused … It leaves me very doubtful of their claims to put public service first.”

Business

What to expect when Primark reopens in Crawley in two weeks

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Primark is working re-open their stores on the 15th june and the store has been working hard to ensure their employee and customer safety is their highest priority.

So what can customers expect to find implemented when they reopen?

Social distancing:

There will be a limit on the number of customers allowed in store at any one time to allow for the appropriate distance in between customers and employees, following government guidelines.

There will be clear signage and floor decals, as well as dedicated employees and additional security staff, to guide customers through the store in a way that limits contact with others.

Every second till will be closed to allow more space between customers and between employees.

The store will temporarily close off fitting rooms and customer toilets.

Personal protection for employees and customers:

Hand sanitiser stations will be made available at the entrance and on the shop floor and back of house for employee and customer use. Face masks and gloves will be made available to all Primark employees.

Perspex screens have been installed on tills to protect customers and employees.

Increased in-store cleaning:

The frequency and rigour of store cleaning will increase, particularly around high frequency touchpoints such as tills, escalators, lifts, and employee areas in back of house.

A basket cleaning system is also being introduced.

Primark CEO, Paul Marchant, said:

“As we re-open our stores in England, nothing matters more than the health and wellbeing of our colleagues and customers.

“We have really missed our customers and we are delighted to be back on 15 June and able to provide them with the quality, affordable products they love from Primark.

“We know that life for our customers is going to look different for a while. We want our stores to be safe and reassuring places to shop and work. While it might take a little longer to get into our stores, once inside, customers will find all their favourite Primark products and we have worked hard to make sure that clear signage and extra help will be there to guide them through the changes we have made to allow for social distancing.

“We will adopt all government safety advice as a minimum in our stores and have benefited from our experience in the other markets in Europe where we have already opened successfully. As we open, we will continue to look at best practice across the retail sector and amend our measures appropriately.

“I would like to thank all of our colleagues and partners for the commitment, strength and resilience they have shown through these challenging times.”

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