A CONTROVERSIAL Post Office move in Park South has been officially agreed despite outcry from hundreds of nearby neighbours.

More than 1,100 people protested against the branch being downsized from a unit in Cavendish Square to part of a Premier newsagent round the corner on Whitbourne Avenue.

They feared that narrower aisles would cause issues for disabled customers and long queues but a Post Office spokeswoman offered reassurance that these concerns had been addressed.

She said: “The relocating branch will be built in line with Post Office specifications, making sure there is sufficient space for the local style post office to operate alongside the retail offer.

“We are working closely with the new operator on the internal layout to make sure there is clear access into the new premises.

“Aisles and the queuing area will be kept free from obstructions and adequate room will be provided for customers to move around and access services without difficulty.”

The relocated post office branch will include two open-plan counters and open for a total of 21 hours and 30 minutes more every week which the company claims will make it more convenient for customers.

The Parks and East Walcot Community Forum secretary Martin Wicks organised a petition against the move which received more than 1,100 signatures. Fellow forum member Carol Brownlee has lived in Cavendish Square for 50 years.

She said: “It’s not good enough, we are very disappointed that they didn’t listen to us and are still going to move it.

“The square has been a disappointment anyway since it was redeveloped but this is yet another thing to go wrong.

“A lot of post offices are closing so we are grateful to keep this one but I just hope there aren’t queues out the door and people with mobility issues don’t struggle.”

South Swindon MP Robert Buckland met executives from the Post Office to present them with the petition and discuss concerns.

Mr Buckland said: “I took an active role in helping residents to voice our concerns about the proposed move. I am disappointed by the decision and will press for more details as to commitments already made by the Post Office about extended opening hours and an internal layout that properly caters for people who have to wait in a queue."

A new date for the transfer has not yet been revealed.