ELDERLY residents will be forced to walk a mile to use a post office after bosses confirmed the one in the Laindon Shopping Centre will close.

The shopping centre is being revamped by Swan Housing and will feature a health centre, 86 houses, 138 flats and a shopping parade.

Post Office bosses have now confirmed the site in the Laindon centre will close its doors for the final time on January 31.

Residents will be forced to travel more than a mile to the Langdon Hills Post Office, at The Triangle.

A spokesman for the Post Office stated it is exploring both a temporary location in the area, as well as long term options.

But residents are still disappointed.

June Scotts, 84, from Laindon, said: “It is sad, really sad, to see it go.

“We have all known this was happening for a while now, but the post office news is a bit of a kick in the teeth as well.

“I couldn’t tell you how long I have been using that post office, but it is a long, long time.

“I know post offices close all over the country, and they don’t have as many users as they once had, but I would say I am in there at least once a week and I am rarely on my own.

“And the postmaster in there is absolutely lovely. I have never grabbed their name but they were always fantastic and talkative as well.

“You hope they are not losing their jobs totally and hopefully the post office can find a suitable location in the same kind of area.

“I know a mile does not sound far but for elderly people like me it is quite a way, and it is a long way to go just to pop into the post office.”

Post Office’s network and sales director Roger Gale said: “We are committed to continuing to provide convenient Post Office services for our customers in Laindon and we are working hard to find a long-term solution. We know the importance of our services to our customers in the area and we are considering all options available to us.”

Swan’s Geoff Pearce said: “As the development gets underway, we will continue to work closely with the Post Office and other retailers to ensure that we provide essential services throughout the regeneration and to focus on limiting disruption and inconvenience for local residents. The Swan team will continue to communicate with Basildon Council, local councillors and residents throughout the regeneration and welcome any queries regarding Laindon Place.”