Glenrothes Post Office changes are ‘unacceptable’

Cllr Ross Vettraino outside the Glamis Centre post office
Cllr Ross Vettraino outside the Glamis Centre post office

A Glenrothes councillor has been angered by what he calls the “dismissive attitude” of Post Office chiefs to complaints over service changes.

Ross Vettraino has written to the Fife area manager demanding an explanation for the “unacceptable deterioration in counter services” at Thornton and Pitteuchar in recent weeks.

The councillor has received a string of complaints from angry constituents since the programme of ‘modernisation’ was implemented in the town.

Mr Vettraino told the Gazette: “I have been told that all the local operators are in support of the planned changes.

“What is not being made clear is that the ‘local operators’ aren’t the staff working locally, but are the sub-postmasters, who are employed somewhere in the R S McColl and Spar organisations and who are certainly not ‘local’.”

Graham Hodson, Post Office spokesman said: ”The three-year programme of modernistion represents the biggest investment in the history of the service and will provide improved profitability and benefit customers through longer opening hours within modern retail environments.”

But Mr Vettraino said the response confirmed a “callous disregard” for those that the service was originally designed to serve.

He added: “These changes represent a real reduction in services and for the Post Office to argue for longer opening hours, when there is no demand for such a change, would be laughable, if it weren’t so serious.

“It’s simply another example of how local needs are suffering as a consequence of the dictate of those based outwith Scotland.”

Reacting to the councillor’s comments Mr Hodson said a statutory four-week consultation had been conducted to advise of the changes.

A three year plan to modernise

The Post Office’s three-year programme of ‘modernisation’ will see around 600, half of their counter network, affected.

A spokesman for the changes said that integration is looked at on an individual basis with all issues regarding privacy considered and implemented in the branch if possible.

A spokesman said open plan format helped discreet communication with customers and staff not having to raise their voice to be heard through a glass screen.