Prince Charles visits Royal Mail delivery office in Cirencester
England is now in a third national lockdown, and people have been told to avoid leaving their homes unless for essential reasons. As a result, demand on the postal service has significantly increased, at a time when many Royal Mail staff have been affected by Covid-19.
Royal Mail said 27 zones in England and one zone in Northern Ireland are no longer receiving regular post and deliveries.
Several Royal Mail staff members are currently off work sick or are self-isolating.
In a statement published on its website, Royal Mail said it was “working hard to deliver the most comprehensive and high quality service we can to all our customers”.
The statement said: “The combination of greatly increased uptake of online shopping, and the ongoing Covid-19 restrictions, mean that all delivery companies are experiencing exceptionally high volumes.
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“Every single parcel and letter is important to us. Despite our best efforts and significant investment in extra resource, some customers may experience slightly longer delivery timescales than our usual service standards.
“This is due to the exceptionally high volumes we are seeing, exacerbated by the coronavirus-related measures we have put in place in local mail centres and delivery offices to keep our people and customers safe.
“In such cases, we always work hard to get back to providing our usual level of service as quickly as we can.”
“Thank you for your patience and understanding.”
Some areas have been reporting delays in postal services for several weeks, and there is some concern that significant mail, like invitations to Covid vaccine appointments, is being missed.
Ilford MP Wes Streeting, whose constituency has been affected by Royal Mail delays, told the Daily Telegraph: “I have been told locally that Royal Mail are prioritising the delivery of parcels to get the backlog down, but I wonder if there is a way for NHS correspondence to be clearly labelled as such and prioritised for delivery.
“No one wants to see a situation where people are missing their vaccination appointments.”
Some have called for the Government to prioritise postal workers to be added to the priority Covid vaccination list.
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Is your post affected by delays?
Royal Mail state that deliveries in some areas are likely to be limited due to resourcing issues.
The Northern Ireland Mail Centre has reported some mail was posted in other parts of the UK yesterday, but mail is due to be delivered today to addresses in the BT postcode area.
The Chester Mail Centre has also reported some mail posted in the CH, LL and SY postcode areas yesterday, with mail due for delivery today to addresses across the rest of the UK.
Areas likely to face delays include:
- Ashford (TN23-TN27)
- Barnsley (S70, S71, S72 and S75)
- Basildon (SS13-SS16)
- Bow (E3)
- Bury St Edmunds (IP28-IP33)
- Chelmsford (CM1-CM3)
- Christchurch (BH23)
- Daventry (NN11)
- Debden (IG7-IG10)
- Enfield (EN1-EN3)
- Grays (RM16-RM20)
- Hampton (TW12)
- Highbury (N5)
- Hornsey (N8)
- Horsham (RH12, RH13)
- Ilford (IG1-IG6)
- Leeds City (LS1-LS5)
- Lewisham (SE13)
- Magherafelt (BT45, BT46)
- Margate (CT7-CT9)
- Rugeley (WS15)
- Somerton (TA11)
- South Ockendon (RM15)
- South Woodford (E18)
- Upper Holloway (N7)
- Wandsworth (SW18)
- Wellington (TA21)
- Widnes (WA8)
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