Organising rapid delivery of Henry VIII's 1516 Royal Mail eventually lent name for the UK public postal service initiated by Charles I from 1635. The mail coach represented the fastest long distance GT passenger vehicle throughout the 19th century. Commanding priority through turnpike roads, they only stopped to quickly change horses, creating the ultimate regular intercity express transport of its time.
Feeding nearest two major towns en route recognises sorting offices stationed at both Mansfield and Alfreton. Collection and dispatch from surrounding villages could have made use of carrier carts before a mail gig added regular rides. Postage costs were significantly reduced from the infamous 1840 Penny Black, the first self adhesive prepaid stamp.
Employing the unprecedented speed of steam locomotives furthermore ensured that fixed cost handling of larger volumes could still reach their nationwide target for next day delivery.
This just basically introduces the historic coverage of town and village General Post Offices offering broader financial services.
Opening an 1837 Sutton-in-Ashfield post office promotes the named Charles Plumbe as its first Deputy Postmaster. His 1844 application to further become a relieving officer under the Mansfield Poor Law Union, did express how very light postal duties with a small salary of £16 10s could largely be managed by his wife. But he fulfilled the position until 1863 initially covering the whole Sutton district, becoming assisted by the first appointed postman. A one armed Mr Tom Dove also gained recognition instructing a school house. That first office alternatively claimed a Little Lane address, although another historian ambiguously noted The Post Office was in the house at the top of Market Street once occupied by J. W. Valantine, the Surgeon. These do however refer to the first identifiable premises, with modern addressing showing this progressive relocation of the towns Royal Mail sorting offices.
Plaque above a Brook Street doorway now claims earliest known premises for "The Old Post Office", from where mail services had been jointly run by chemists. The 1883 death of Mr S Littlewood passed over both interests to Messrs Wharmby and Phillips, until their partnership dissolved in 1884. Members of the Local Board deemed it necessary to separate a later postmasters ordinary business, by erecting nearby the 1925 postcard titled Old Post Office which had stood cornering end of King Street. October 16th 1892 opening included new telegraph communications, but judging by the increased number of smartly uniformed postmen presented through dates spanning that mail office relocation, it seems designed for sorting a larger volume of letters and parcels.
Construction of a much larger building presented superior modern post office counters facing that old former Brook Street premises on bottom corner of Langton Road. That served the busier 20th century town centre, while a red pillar box on Huthwaite Road fronted a small office shop cornering Carnarvon Grove, assisting residential expansion across village border inbetween Sutton and Huthwaite Royal Mail offices.
Taking these scenes covered a critical time for sub-postmasters. Post Office executives announced late 2003, plans to close 3,000 less used branches, and both of these were shut shortly after. However, the main Sutton Post Office counters were actually relocated to share office space inside the Asda superstore, and despite displaying a 2004 For Sale sign, the Royal Mail appears to have retained this building.
The rear Langton Road access is still used as the main Ashfield sorting and delivery depot, while a modified frontage allows personal collection of any recorded deliveries. What is much more surprising, was Huthwaite kept its own Post Office.