Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Stiperstones post office to close this month

BBC News reports:

Four outreach post offices in south Shropshire are set to close this month.

Marton, Longden, Stiperstones and Wentnor only open for a few hours each week.

But the Post Office has said the services will cease due to "very low customer usage".

The report quotes the Lib Dem councillor Heather Kidd, whose ward includes Marton:

"The pub's gone, the village shop's gone, there's nowhere else to gather.

"It's a focal point for everyone to come together and have a coffee and touch base once a week." 

It's does make you wonder how the rural poor and elderly manage to live these days.

For a Malcolm Saville reader, it's tempting to identify Stiperstones post office with Jenny Harman's home in the Lone Pine Club stories, Barton Beach post office.

But I remember Saville's younger son, the Revd Jeremy Saville, telling a meeting of the Malcolm Saville Society that he did not think his father had visited the Stiperstones when he wrote the first book he set there (Seven White Gates, 1944). The book's eerie atmosphere owed a lot to his reading of Mary Webb.

In any case, I suspect Stiperstones was less a village in those days than a scattered hillside township of former miners' smallholdings.

Let's end with a picture of me at Stiperstones post office 30 years ago almost to the day.

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