Opposition to plans to close three post offices is growing as the deadline for comments draws near.

Plans by the Post Office to close three offices in Brighton sparked outrage among residents and elderly people who rely on the services provided.

The Post Office plans to close Bates Road, Havelock Road and Ditchling Road post offices by March but residents, councillors and MP David Lepper are determined the offices will not shut.

Mr Lepper, Labour and Co-operative MP for Brighton Pavilion, has accused the Post Office of breaking promises.

Mr Lepper said: "On July 4th last year, in a letter from Richard Barker, general manager of the urban post office network, I was assured that age of population, residential homes, sheltered accommodation, hills, main roads and local transport links would all be taken into account.

"Now the proposal to close Havelock Road and Bates Road post offices and redirect customers to offices at the top of Preston Drove, the Hollingdean dip and London Road Co-op shows that promise was worthless."

Resident Betty Morris, 81, of Bates Road, Brighton, and a team of friends have been circulating petitions demanding the offices stay open.

Mrs Morris said: "A lot of people around here feel life is much more difficult without a post office. I'm in there almost every day.

"There is still a community spirit here at the moment and we don't have some of the social problems other areas have because people know each other. They bump into each other in these small shops."

Mrs Morris, who has lived in her home for 40 years, said it would be impossible for pensioners to climb the hill of Preston Drove to use the Fiveways Post Office.

Philip Smith has lived in Havelock Road since 1975. He has written to the Post Office to oppose the proposed closure.

He said: "I'm horrified because the post office is the hub of the community.

"I live across the road from it and see all the comings and goings.

"I feel their minds are made up and there's very little one can do to stop the closure.

"They have dangled redundancy payments to the staff and it must be very difficult for them to refuse."

Mr Lepper said: "Clearly the people making these recommendations are completely ignorant about the area and the people who live there."

Mr Lepper has also sent a letter to Drew McBride, Post Office area boss.

He said: "I have pointed out the only alternative branch with anything like a reasonable public transport link is the Co-op in London Road.

"For more elderly residents, customers with small children and those with disabilities, none of these is within easy walking distance."

A meeting about the proposed closures, organised by Postwatch and open to interested organisations and the public, is at the Quality Hotel, West Street, Brighton, on February 12, starting at 7.30pm.

The deadline for complaints about the proposed closures is February 3.

Petitions can be found in shops in Preston Drove.