Extending a comforting hand: A Beacon of Support

Published on: 17th January 2024

Red letter box against the backdrop of a brick wall

Mr Bates v's the Post Office, a four-part ITV drama which aired in the first week of January, featured a dramatisation of the real-life stories about the miscarriage of justice and mistreatment of sub-postmasters by the UK Post Office has left many with questions. It has sparked a national outpouring of emotions and been covered in endless column inches, debated in Parliament during Prime Minister's Question Time and brought to full public attention.

For many rural towns and villages that dominate our diocese, the post office, like the church, often remains one of the last centres of community life. The revelations of the challenges faced by those impacted by the Horizon scandal have rocked many and ignited a call for support.

For Reverend Richard Hill, this issue hits close to home. With his father having served as a sub-postmaster for 15 years in two Dorset villages, he understands the pressures associated with such a pivotal community role. His father retired just before the controversial Horizon system was implemented.

In response to the programme, Rev. Richard Hill, who now lives in Ludlow, contacted Hereford Diocese to offer chaplaincy support and invite anyone living in the diocese whom the Post Office scandal has directly impacted to reach out for a supportive chat.

"In times of uncertainty, community support becomes crucial. My gesture offers solace and understanding to those directly connected or related to someone affected by the post office scandal and who is living in Hereford Diocese."

If you or someone you know has been directly affected or needs to talk to someone, Rev. Richard Hill can be contacted initially by email and will then offer a telephone number to arrange an informal chat by phone.



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