Hastings will lose one of its two CBD Post Shops this month as a result of a franchise owner amalgamating two shops into one at the Wallace Development retail centre in the city.
Hastings Take Note in Russell St, next to K-Mart, is a book and Lotto shop which also hosts a Post Shop franchise. The owner will close the store and another Paper Plus shop on Heretaunga St, so the two can be merged into the retail centre being developed in the old Farmers whiteware site.
New Zealand Post said the franchise owner chose not to offer Post Shop services at the new site because it would be within a few metres of a Post Shop on Market St.
Hastings Take Note would close at 4pm on November 18 and people would be directed to use the Market St Post Shop to access postal, bill payment and banking services.
Post office boxes at the Russell St shop would be re-located to the Hastings Post Shop on Market St and be available from November 19.
Post Shop media spokesman Michael Tull said Post Shop was open to the idea of a new franchise for Hastings if one was proposed.
"We are looking at the possibility of additional postal presence in Hastings whether that be in the site next to K-Mart or somewhere else." Mr Tull said a franchise arrangement ideally involved Post Shop services being coupled with other businesses such as a book shop and should not be considered as a stand-alone venture.
Hastings also has a third Post Shop in Stortford Lodge Heretaunga St West at the west end of town and out of the CBD. NZ Post Franchise Association chairman, Jeff Whittaker, who runs a Post Shop franchise and pharmacy in Havelock North, said various Post Shops had opened and closed in Hastings during the years. He said customers who would normally use the Take Note franchise could "always come to us" or would head to the Market St or Stortford Lodge shops.
"Mail volumes are dropping, that seems to be the pattern and the post is in a big area of change at the moment. People are looking to see how better to deliver the service and what a Post Shop will look like in the future," Mr Whittaker said.
At the Havelock North shop, there was still big demand for post boxes as there were many areas which did not have a mail delivery service.