Rainham Post Office has been announced a finalist in the Community Engagement category at the Post Office's ‘We're Stronger Together' regional awards for Greater London. The awards recognise the efforts made by postmasters across the region to keep branches open during the Covid-19 pandemic and serving their local community.

Rainham Post Office was a finalist in the Community Engagement category at the Post Office's ‘We're Stronger Together' regional awards for the Greater London region.

The great work by Postmaster Raj Bhatt who runs Rainham Post Office, was highlighted last week by Post Office Chief Executive Nick Read. Postmasters who operate branches in the Greater London region had the opportunity to share their experience of running their branch during the pandemic and hear directly about the Post Office's future growth strategy.

Post Office Area Manager Mick Norman, said:

"Raj in our Rainham branch has been nominated for the Community Engagement award for his work to help the local community. Despite himself being vulnerable, Raj kept his branch open and created an order and delivery service for vulnerable customers and he put aside the most essential items so they could be delivered to those that needed them most. His branch also has been buy with customers accessing their bank accounts and cash as the last bank in the area has been closed."

Jon Cruddas MP for Dagenham and Rainham said:

"Postal workers have gone the extra mile during the pandemic and the retail side has been no exception, Post Office branches have played a vital role in supporting customers and our communities throughout lockdown. I commend the work of Postmaster Raj Bhatt whose commitment as a key worker has helped keep the local area moving."

Postmasters heard more about three areas of their business that could help them recover some of the lost trade as a result of the pandemic – Mails and Parcels, banking – cash withdrawals and deposits, and the return in demand for foreign exchange.

    • - Many people rely on easy access to cash. To spend that cash, businesses need to continue to accept it, and be able to conveniently deposit it into their business bank accounts. That ‘cash cycle' will play a vital part in our economic recovery from Covid-19. Post Office branches are often the last counter in town where businesses can deposit a day's takings. Business deposits are growing between 10 - 20% week on week
    • - For small businesses, being able to get goods out to customers is key. Post Office's ‘Drop and Go' parcel service has seen a 70% increase in use month on month.
    • - Last month, Post Office reactivated its online foreign exchange service and its branch pre-order operation. Customers planning trips abroad can order over 60 currencies online for next day home delivery or collection from all 11,500 Post Office branches. The option to collect in-branch helps increase footfall at our branches and on the UK's High Streets.