It's full steam ahead for campaign to save Felpham post office as team looks forward to the new year

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After a successful 2023, the team behind a campaign to save Felpham Village Post Office is looking to put its best foot forwards in the new year.

“We’ve already raised £30,000 from just individual donations, from the GoFundMe and donated cheques,” Friends of Felpham campaigner Lizzie Mickery said. “And considering our standing start, that’s extraordinary. But now we’re starting on phase two of the plan – which involves donations from local SMEs (small and medium enterprises) and applying for grants.”

The campaign to buy the post office started last year, after the post-office was listed for sale in August. Although they have plans of their own for the building, the campaigners – who have united under the banner of ‘Friends of Felpham’ – are driven largely by a desire to protect a preserve a vital village amenity.

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"We've been conducting questionnaires and surveys and just generally talking to people, and the feeling of the village is that we just can't lose the post office, we absolutely can’t,” Lizzie said. “And what’s really shone through in all this is that sense of community, which is what I think everybody is responding to; post offices are so important. They keep communities tied together.”

Residents are fighting to save the post office. Photo: Roger Brooks.Residents are fighting to save the post office. Photo: Roger Brooks.
Residents are fighting to save the post office. Photo: Roger Brooks.

The Felpham post office is of particular significance to locals, not just because it offers a vital service they’d have to travel to get otherwise, but because Felpham has been home to a post office since 1847, and the current building represents a piece of living village history, an important part of its heritage.

Post offices all over the country have made headlines recently as the fallout from the Horizon scandal – which saw 700 people prosecuted after faulty software gave officials the impression money had been stolen – continues to develop. Although the Felpham post office itself remains unaffected by the scandal, Lizzie thinks the story speaks to the power and importance of post offices in our communities: "Where we do reflect that news is in the need and power of the post office, and the community that springs up around it. When a post office dies, so does the village, because people feel stranded."

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