YORK'S Post Office could close and move into the Coney Street branch of WHSmith.

York Central MP Rachael Maskell said the news that the Crown Post Office on Lendal could shut is a "travesty" for the city and will come as a "shock" to residents.

Ms Maskell accused the organisation of failing to consult with residents over the plans and said staff who work at the branch are now "uncertain" about what the future holds.

A spokesman for the Post Office confirmed there are plans to move the branch into a WHSmith, but said there will be a six-week consultation on the proposals.

Ms Maskell said: “Yet another public asset is being flogged off, at the public expense. This will infuriate residents and businesses, but today my thoughts are with the staff who are uncertain what their futures hold.

“Every city centre should have a Crown Post Office, but to lose this vital service in a city such as York is a travesty.

"It downgrades the importance of York, and it demonstrates contempt for residents.

"Local residents as well as tourists use Lendal Post Office, which provides a range of services from the highly professional staff who work there.

“I will do all I can to ensure that Post Office staff, local businesses and residents across York are heard, and that Post Office bosses come to York to explain themselves and hear the negative impact that their decision will have on the whole city.”

The Crown Post Office was built in 1884 by Henry Tanner and is one of the last surviving late-Victorian purpose-built post offices still in use.

Ms Maskell raised concerns about the impact on the "struggling" high street if the branch shuts.

She added: “The break-up of our postal service is driven by ideology not common sense.

"The Lib Dem leader, Vince Cable MP, introduced these proposals to franchise the Post Office while in coalition with the Tory Government between 2010 and 2015. Labour will renationalise the Post Office together with Royal Mail, making sure that the whole postal service works together in the interests of customers, not shareholders."

She said she has written to the post office workers' union and the managing director of Post Office Ltd, asking them to launch a consultation before further action is taken.

A spokesman for the Post Office said 40 branches are set to be moved into WHSmith stores by 2019.

Post Office network and sales director Roger Gale said: “WHSmith and Post Office have worked together successfully for more than a decade and our collaboration helps to secure our services on high streets for years to come.

“We’re continuing to respond to unprecedented change on high streets and in consumer trends.  By adapting to the needs of customers we’re making sure Post Offices will matter as much tomorrow as they do today, with services available when and where people want them, in convenient locations and open for longer hours, including Sundays."