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WH Smith to open 16 more post offices in its stores

CWU fears for job losses after hundreds of staff were made redundant when WH Smith took on initial batch of post offices in 2006

Chief executive Stephen Clarke said the post offices were part of a plan to make the best use of store space. Photograph: David Sillitoe for the Guardian

WH Smith has walked into a row with post office workers after signing a deal to operate more outlets in its stores.

The retailer expects to open 16 more post offices in its branches, subject to six-week public consultations, under an agreement revealed alongside its annual results yesterday. WH Smith said it has also renewed a contract to operate 82 post offices in its stores for a further five years.

Chief executive Stephen Clarke, who took over from long-term WH Smith boss Kate Swann earlier this year, said the post offices were part of a plan to make the best use of store space and encourage more shoppers to visit.

However, a spokesperson for the Communication Workers Union (CWU) said: “We have grave concerns over WH Smith taking on a further 16 post offices.”

Read more: WH Smith to open 16 more post offices in its stores | Business | The Guardian.