Experienced Postmaster Punit Patel has “cut the ribbon” at his second Post Office branch, which has restored Post Office service to the community of Weyhill Road, Andover.
Mr Patel has added a Post Office to his One Stop at 80 Weyhill Road, Andover, SP10 3NP.
Punit and his wife Ketki have run this convenience store since 2004. Originally it was a Nisa store, then last year they undertook a £150,000 refit to fully modernise the store and to make it into a One Stop store selling Tesco’s products.
When customers heard that Weyhill Road Post Office, which was inside a McColl’s store at 155c Weyhill Road, Andover, SP10 3BH, that was closing, they asked Punit if we would take on the Post Office. Punit, who has been the Postmaster for Ludgershall for nearly seven years, successfully applied for his second branch.
A Post Office counter is now alongside the retail counter.
Postmaster Punit Patel said: “People are really delighted to have a Post Office in my shop. People really missed having a Post Office in this area of Andover and have had to travel further. It’s on the main road in Andover and we have a customer car park, plus roadside parking nearby.
“Customers are impressed with the new-look shop after the store had a major refit and became a One Stop store – turnover has doubled as they like the Tesco’s products and the modern new-look. Having the Post Office will also attract new customers and it is very convenient for the local residents and businesses. It has worked out brilliantly.”
The Patels are very community-minded. During the pandemic they did fundraising/donated £1,000 of food to the Army Veterans charity and to the Andover Foodbank.
Antoinette Chitty, Post Office Network Provision Lead, said: “We are delighted to have restored Post Office service as we know how important a Post Office is to a community. The long opening hours are very handy. This couple are popular as they run a great shop and they like to support the community.”