Looking for last minute gift ideas?  Then it’s really time that you checked out your local shops.  They really need your support and you can cut your carbon footprint by leaving the car at home 🙂

So many neighbourhood shops are going to the wall in the face of competition from the giants – and we need to support those that remain, otherwise we’ll lose them too. 

Okay, I’m biased. A relative of mine has a post office and thousands of them are facing closure in the next few months. The problem is that so many people now use online banking, shop in the city centre and use email instead of traditional mail.  So, help your local post office – you can withdraw cash there if you bank with Barclays, Lloyds, Co-op or Alliance & Leicester. You can buy or order foreign currency there, send moneygrams overseas or buy postal orders as gifts.  If they also have a retail shop, you can get some budget stocking fillers like stationery sets, calendars and diaries – and they might even be different to the chainstore ones that everyone else is buying 🙂

And, remember, most small post offices are privately owned and they are really struggling now because of a steady loss of government business. TV licensing has been taken away, DVLA is now offering car tax online and millions of benefit customers have been cajoled into having their payment direct into the bank.

Yes, it saves the government money – but at what cost?  Post Offices provide a vital community service and we need to support them – and our other local shops –  all year round. It’s good for us, it’s good for the community and it’s good for the planet.

Right, I’m climbing down off the soap box now – 🙂 – and since it is almost the big day, grab a drink and sit back and enjoy a wonderful version of Silent Night from The King – complete with some great Presley pictures.




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