Town's new Post Office welcomes first customers after 'vital' service saved

Bungay Post Office has reopened in the Bungay Shopper store.

Bungay Post Office has reopened in the Bungay Shopper store. - Credit: Post Office

A town's Post Office has welcomed its first customers in its new home after a successful fight to save the "vital" service.

It was announced earlier this year that Bungay's Post Office would now be housed at the Bungay Shopper store in St Mary's Street.

The move comes after the town council had hosted a temporary service for more than a year in a bid to keep the Post Office in the town following the closure of the store it was previously located inside, McColls, in January 2021.

Bungay Post Office has reopened in the Bungay Shopper store.

Bungay Post Office has reopened in the Bungay Shopper store. Raj Pakkiyarajah, John Adams and Peter Aldous cut the ribbon. - Credit: Post Office

New postmaster Sathasivam Pakkiyarajah, known as Raj by customers, welcomed Bungay's mayor and deputy, John Adams and Tony Dawes, as well as former mayor Bob Prior and Waveney MP Peter Aldous, for the grand opening last week.

Mr Pakkiyarajah, who has run the store for two years and refurbished it as part of the move, said: “I am delighted to have been able to add Bungay Post Office to my shop as I know how important it is to residents, businesses and tourists.

"Customers are really pleased that a permanent Post Office has opened here, the improvements I have made to the shop and the daily opening.”

The new branch is open 71 hours a week, with the main counter at the back of the store open Monday to Friday between 9am-5.30pm, and 9am-1pm on Saturdays.

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The open-plan counter alongside the retail counter also offers the majority of Post Office services and is open from 7am-6pm on Mondays to Saturdays, and 8am-1pm on Sundays.

Bungay Post Office has reopened in the Bungay Shopper store.

Bungay Post Office has reopened in the Bungay Shopper store. Peter Aldous, John Adams and Raj Pakkiyarajah cut the cake. - Credit: Tony Dawes

Mr Aldous said: “It is great news for Bungay that the town now has a full-time permanent Post Office again.

"I want to thank Raj for adding the Post Office and for modernising his store at the same time.

"This new-look Post Office and shop look great.

"I must also thank Bungay Town Council for providing space for an interim Post Office.

"Everyone pulled together to ensure that Bungay was not without a Post Office.

John Adams, mayor of Bungay, said: “It was unthinkable that Bungay would not have a Post Office as there are so many vital services.

"Peter Aldous was a lynchpin to bring everyone together to find a temporary solution at Bungay Town Council.

"We were glad that we had suitable space and Post Office was able to provide a temporary counter that was very easy to install.

"We only have one mobile bank that visits for a short time each week, so a Post Office is vital for people to be able to do their banking on behalf of all the high street banks.”

Wendy Hamilton, Post Office network provision lead, said: “We sincerely thank Bungay Town Council for providing premises for a temporary Post Office which allowed us to provide vital Post Office services to this town.

"We worked with Peter Aldous and Bungay Town Council to quickly set up this interim service.

"Now Bungay Post Office is in a permanent new location.

"Raj’s fully-modernised shop looks fantastic and Post Office services are now available daily."