The Royal Mail have confirmed they are proposing to close the processing part of its business in Portsmouth meaning the possible loss of up to 380 jobs.
The planned move would mean mail will no longer be sorted in Portsmouth from the middle of 2015 when that part of the business will be moved to a new central “supercentre”, probably to be based in Eastleigh.
Around 200 delivery staff working in Slindon Street will not be affected by the closure - customers will still be able to pick up parcels from the site.
The Communication Workers Union (CWU) stated they saw no need for the processing centre to be centralised, as Royal Mail last year made a £403m profit. Branch Secretary of the CWU’s Portsmouth region, Ruth Harris, said: “We are really concerned by the potential job losses to more than 350 people and also the deterioration of the services for the area that the Portsmouth mail centre covers. It is just a cost-cutting exercise to make the company more attractive for the government’s plans for privatisation.”
“There will be a deterioration in service. There will be chances for people to move to Southampton but this is not a simple nine to five job. Workers cannot rely on public transport to get there. We are hoping for more talks but what we need to do now is talk to our members.”
At the moment all mail travelling between the Isle of Wight is handled in Portsmouth with a very tight turnaround in order to meet postal deadlines.
Ruth Harris said if the processing centre was moved, services would be slower.