Post Office network must not be allowed to flounder

  • Fears for Broadford post office branch after 190 years
  • Latest example of decline in network


Fianna Fáil TD for Clare Cathal Crowe is calling for tangible action from government in addressing the decline in the country’s post office network.

It comes amid uncertainty about the future Broadford’s post office, which has been in operation in the village since 1831.

The branch closed in the leadup to Christmas on compassionate grounds but there is now major concern that it will close for good once the current operator retires.

“The loss of this post office in Broadford has hit the community hard,” said Deputy Crowe.

“I raised this in the Dáil last week with Minister Eamon Ryan and told him about the proud 190-year history of this branch.

“James O’Brien is the latest in a long line of postmasters in Broadford and after guiding the post office through probably its most challenging business period in its nearly two-century long history, deserves to put his feet up now when he retires.

“However, the end of his working life should not mark the end of a post office for Broadford.

“If it’s withdrawn at this stage, it won’t come back and now with people working remotely there’s a greater need than ever for post offices and all forms of communication to be accessible in rural communities.

“People are being asked to instead consider travelling 15km to Ardnacrusha, or to Tulla or Kilkishen. This isn’t feasible for all and with poor public transport, excludes those without access to a car in many respects.

“The reality of 21st century working is that there are now a number of small businesses working from home in the Broadford area and these people often have to nip out and go down to the post office to receive or post parcel or package and losing out on the branch on their doorstep would hugely discommode them.

“Dublin City Council are progressing plans to develop white-water rafting in city at a cost of €22 million. At the same time, Grant Thornton has found that it would cost €17m per annum to keep Ireland’s network of post offices afloat – this would plug their shortfall.

“It’s completely non-sensical that €22m would be spent on a vanity project in the capital while the vital network of rural post offices face shutdown – it’s another example of how communities outside of the main urban centres are being left to flounder and it simply can’t continue.”