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    Darwen c-store set to host ‘post office lite’

    Sunnyhurst Stores, Hindle Street, Darwen (Photo via LDRS)

    An East Lancashire town is to get a new-style ‘drop and collect’ post office branch in a convenience store.

    The outlet will be opening at Sunnyhurst Stores, 99 Hindle Street, Darwen, at 1pm on Thursday July 20.

    It will offer pre-paid parcel collection and return, bill payments and mobile top-ups.

    The opening hours will be from 6am to 9pm Mondays to Sundays.

    Darwen West ward’s Cllr Dave Smith said: “It’s pleasing to see the Post Office will be providing some extra services in this part of town where there used to be two post offices but both closed.

    “Although not a full Post Office service it’s still a step in the right direction.

    “The services provided will be very convenient for many people in this area and will provide an alternative to having to go to the Post Office at The Circus or at Moss Bridge.

    “This is positive news.”

    He was responding to a letter from Post Office network propositions manager Natalie Liff which told him: “In collaboration with Payzone, we will be opening a new type of Post Office branch in your area at Sunnyhurst Stores, 99 Hindle Street, Darwen commencing on Thursday July 20 at 13:00.

    “In order to strengthen the network and enhance its commercial sustainability, we have introduced a lighter, flexible branch format called ‘Drop and Collect, which has been developed to take advantage of the opportunities a vibrant, and increasingly competitive, parcels market offers.

    “Consumer shopping habits have been changing and the popularity of online shopping has transformed the parcels market at pace.

    “Drop and Collect will help us address gaps in service coverage, ensuring that we have the best network for parcels across all parts of the UK.

    “This will strengthen the Post Office brand and improve the ability to compete for additional business from new carriers for the wider network.

    “The new Drop and Collect at Sunnyhurst Stores, will offer Post Office services from a handheld device, providing convenient access for customers to bill payments and prepaid parcel collections and returns.

    “To maximise accessibility to these services that our customers are increasingly seeking, more complex services like personal and business banking will not be available at this branch.

    “A wider range of Post Office services are available from the nearby branches at Darwen Post Office, 5 The Circus, Darwen, and Moss Bridge Post Office, 480 to 482 Blackburn Road, Darwen.”

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