Belfast Telegraph

Stamp of approval as post workers step down

by Chris McCann

Two women who have served a north Belfast Post Office for over 60 years between them stood down this week to much praise.

Sandra Wallace departed on Tuesday after serving 14 years as sub-post mistress in Ballysillan Post Office while her colleague Liz Acheson, who has worked there for a period stretching back some 47 years, retired.

North Belfast MP Nigel Dodds visited the Post Office on Monday to express his best wishes to the two long-serving staff members .

Mr Dodds said both would be missed by regular customers.

The Post Office, on the Crumlin Road, is continuing under new temporary management until a long-term post-master is found.

“I would like to thank our customers for being so supportive and loyal,” said Sandra Wallace.

“In particular a couple of years ago when so many of them signed a petition to keep the Post Office open when there was a threat to funding.”

Her colleague, Liz Acheson, added: “It has been very enjoyable working in the Post Office over so many years. I love working with the public; the majority of people are lovely, though you always get the odd one...

“I commenced in 1963 working for Sam Gaston when the post office was in the Jones & Johnston store, continuing with his son John and then for Sandra.

“I’ve seen almost three generations — I was paying out their family allowance and now I’m paying their pensions!”

Mr Dodds heaped praise on both women. “Sandra and Liz have provided sterling service to the customers of Ballysillan Post Office over many years,” he said.

“Their departure marks the end of an era for this Post Office and they will surely be missed by regular customers.

“I join with others in wishing them well for the future. Sandra wishes to be able to devote more time to caring responsibilities, while Liz will be looking forward to a well-earned rest in her retirement.

“I am relieved that this Post Office will be continuing in operation with no break in service. A temporary post master has been appointed while long-term options are explored.

“It is essential that Post Office Ltd make it a priority to find a new post master or mistress. I know from other situations that continuity of service is crucial to the long-term viability of post offices which play a vital role in local community and economic life.”

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