An Post plans to close 161 post offices around the country

A full list of post offices closures will be issued later this month

An Post plans to close 161 post offices around the country

File photo of An Post post office | Image: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

An Post has announced plans to close 161 post offices around Ireland.

The move is part of its Post Office Transformation Programme, and a €50m investment in the network.

It says 161 postmasters have applied for the company's voluntary retirement package.

An Post says a list of post offices closing will be issued at the end of August "once the details have been confirmed with each postmaster."

It adds that the remaining network of 950 post offices is "the largest retail network in Ireland."

It says the company, the Irish Postmasters Union (IPU) and postmasters are "in agreement" that the consolidation of the network, and subsequent transfer of business to neighbouring offices, is "essential to the sustainability of the overall network".

It adds that mail delivery and collection services are not affected.

File photo | Image: Sam Boal/Rollingnews.ie

In a statement, An Post says it "reaffirms its commitment that communities of over 500 people will have a post office and that over 95% of the population will be within 15km of at least one post office.

"All island post offices are being retained."

"To meet the above coverage commitments, An Post will also publish at the end of August a target list of new post office locations."

Among the changes to the network are lunchtime opening hours.

Debbie Byrne, MD of An Post Retail, says: "Today's news marks a key point on the journey towards a stronger post office network.

"Some closures were inevitable in a network that has been largely unchanged for many years.

"The consolidation of post office business will strengthen the remaining post offices, and the development of a wide range of new services over the coming months and years will see a reinvigorated network across 950 post offices."