World’s oldest post office, founded in 1712, offered for sale

The world’s oldest post office, founded in 1712, is located in Sanquhar, Scotland.

By Denise McCarty

The world’s oldest operating post office is for sale, according to a press release from the Post Office, the United Kingdom’s retail company of 11,500 branches that provide a variety of services, including selling postage stamps.

This post office in Sanquhar, Scotland, has been in continuous service for more than 300 years, since 1712.

The Universal Postal Union recognizes it as the oldest working post office, and letters posted there receive the handstamp, “The World’s Oldest Post Office.”

The Guinness World Records entry reads, “The oldest working post office is located in Sanquhar, Dumfriesshire, UK. It has been operating continuously since 1712.

“The second oldest working post office is located in Stockholm, Sweden (1720) and the third in Santiago, Chile (1772).”

According to the aforementioned press release, the post office building in Sanquhar started out as a staging post for mail carriages.

Since 2011, it has been owned by Penny Murphy, who has decided to put the business up for sale.

According to the press release, the guide price for the business is £235,000. It is listed on the website of the real estate agency Humberstones at www.humberstones.co.uk.

Suzanne Richardson, regional network manager for Scotland and the North said: “We are looking for someone very special to replace Penny and take on the post office in Sanquhar; it combines a rich postal history with offering today’s wide range of post office services. While the post office is for sale, customers should be assured that it is ‘business as usual’ in Sanquhar.

“By becoming only the 16th person to run Sanquhar Post Office, the new owner would take their place in the roll-call of postal history.”

Located on the River Nith in southern Scotland, Sanquhar was granted a royal charter in 1598 but may have been a settlement as early as the eighth century.

Published 4/18/2014 7:05 AM