A little while ago the Community and Public Services team at Consumer Focus commissioned the Plunkett Foundation and the Social Enterprise Coalition to compile details of post offices owned and operated by communities. The data includes contact details, core activities, company type, their relationship with Post Office Ltd (POL), details of the services provided, information about their income and numbers of staff employed.
CF Labs was asked to find a way of presenting some of this information and making it available as an online resource. On Sunday we launched Community Post Offices, a simple directory to publish this data.
The website allows you to search for community post offices in your area, find out where they are located and see what services they provide. If the post office has a website, we’ve provided a link so you can find out more details. We’ve also built a form to allow other community post offices to register to be listed on the website.
We’ve also used the data to produce a few pages showing statistics such as the core activities, legal structures and services provided.
You can read more about the Community Post Offices project from the Consumer Focus press release.
Third Party Tools
We’ve made extensive use of MaPit from mySociety and UK Postcodes from Pezholio to provide location information from the organisation’s postcodes. This has allowed us to power the postcode search and pinpoint the location of each post office on the embedded Google Maps.
All the non-commercial data on the website is being released using the Open Government Licence for public sector information. This means that you are free to re-use the information as long as you acknowledge us as the source. More information about the licence is available on the National Archives website.
To make it easier to reuse the information, we’ve published most of it using machine readable formats. Initially we’ve done this using the JSON format and CSV for the statistics. We’ve published instructions on how to access these formats on the website.
As always, we appreciate any feedback you have. Either leave a comment here, or email communitypostoffices [at] consumerfocus.org.uk.