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SE1 postal service problems (now closed)

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Tuesday 27 January 2004 6.41pm
FROM A SMALL BUSINESS:

No, I've got no evidence....

Yes, we thought the vanished credit card was a mishap.

Yes, we thought the extraordinary number of missing cheque payments was just bad luck.

Yes, when clients insisted we'd cashed their cheques, we gave them the benefit of the doubt and wrote it off as our own error.

Yes, I feel a mug... and I'll be using this website a lot more in the future.
Tuesday 27 January 2004 10.30pm
Oooh, another business. You do have evidence, trinity - if you write a statement for Simon Hughes, that will function as the right kind of evidence.

Can you copy the problem details you have written above, with any other business problems that occurred as a result, and add your business name, location and the dates these events happened (as accurately as possible - I put it by month and that was OK).

And then send it to Simon Hughes via the contact details given above in an earlier post.

Bingo! Business complaints carry a lot of weight within our mass wailing, so please please take the time out to do this, I am sure it will help move things forward.

As to Time Out. Hmm. From looking through a few old issues, I'd guess that Rebecca Taylor, the News editor who covers London-problem stories like this, would be the right person. But there's no email contacts published in the mag, and only a general fax number listed for the whole editorial section of the magazine. This fax number is 020 7813 6028.

I am about to go away for a while so it's not appropriate for me to do it. Does anyone else fancy doing it?

The only thing I'd say is that a quick summary of the situation needs to be written (or possibly just the text from the South London Press article, plus more on the many angles they didn't cover), plus a pointer to the web forum pages. (but not an exact URL as that would be hell to type in.) Plus a contact number for them to call.

This will really help, as there's a lot of info on this thread now and journalists need 'brief guides' rather than the whole lot all at once.

I now feel really bossy....but anyway, hope someone can do this, it would be great.
Wednesday 28 January 2004 1.01am
I have set up a page at www.London-SE1.co.uk/postalservice to act as a reference point for the campaign and an easily quotable URL.



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Thursday 29 January 2004 2.07pm
I've tried sending an email to Simon Hughes to the address mentioned by fedora and get a failure delivery notification -- anyone else had these problems -- I checked out the address on his website and it seems to be current. Can't get through to his constituency office though.

The potted version of items I've had going missing / tampered with is :

New bank account info tampered with

Chequebook stolen and used to the tune of 300

Broadband modem missing

12 bills / letters from London Electricity (resulted in a threatening letter advising me of the imminent visit of an officer with a warrant)

4 letters from my mortgage provider

Birthday card arrived opened

Various christmas cards / december post arrived opened

3 Job applications missing

3 job application forms arrived beyond closing date
Thursday 29 January 2004 3.19pm
Mine is another business that is having problems

We are in a multi-tenanted building, 4 companies and one flat.

We have had all sorts of things go missing and it's causing lots of hassle for us.

We have lots of lowish cost items sent to us (sub 100) that it's not economical to have sent via registered post. All together we have probably had over 1000's worth of goods not received.

Many official letters sent to us never get here mainly statements and cheques - lack of statements means our suppliers get the hump. We like to be prompt payers and get early settlement discounts for many things we buy but this delay in invoices getting to us means we can sometimes miss out a conservative estimate would be we've lost anything between 2,000 - 5,000 because of this and lost cheques means we can't always tell if someone is stalling on payment to us.

We have also been threatened with fines for late returns of forms from companies house, Vat office etc - forms and reminders have never turned up - luckily I have copies of the Royal mail complaint responses and they accept this as a valid reason for delay.

I have received debt collection notices for Congestion charge fines for a hire car, again never received any notices or reminders on this (I had paid the CC and have receipt to prove it but that F**k up is another matter)

We receive anything up to 10 misdelivered letters a week - If you work in the leather market (4 streets away) and have had 'wrong address again dips**t' written on it it's been to my office first.

But the greatest feat yet is a few months ago we did not receive any mail to our building for 8 days in a row -

I called on the first day and was told 'there's a staff shortage, post would be you tomorrow'

Second day - 'Staff shortages they are trying to get other posties to do overtime'.

Third day - 'Local sorting office have no record of failed deliveries in the area for last 2 days but if there were staff shortages they should still get delivered on same day but in the afternoon'

Forth day-'we cannot get in contact with local sorting office'

Fifth day-'still cannot get in contact with local sorting office - will not answer phone and have not responded to emails' 'tried sending them a letter?'

Sixth day-'Local sorting office have said no problems in the area, it must just be that nobody has sent you post'
'So that's no post for six days for an average of 20 letters a day we get to our building?'
'I'll get back to you'

Seventh day - 'Have got through to local sorting office they deny there is any problems to your street, but saying this the sorting office manager is refusing to come to phone to talk to me'

Eighth day - post dated the day before turned up 'Local sorting office say that they have no more mail for you from last week'

No letters from the 7 previous days turned up - I did get a nice letter saying sorry for all of you problems for ONE day and a nice book of stamps.

During this time I visited the sorting office one afternoon - guy there said everyone goes around 1 and after this time nobody knows how to look for the post for specific streets

aaaaaarrrrgggghhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!
Thursday 29 January 2004 3.49pm
biscuit boy -- I had a similar problem with late return of forms -- because letters from my mortgage provider went missing, we nearly defaulted on mortgage redundancy insurance, and I had just been made redundant. Had to explain to them that I couldn't get the necessary docs back in time, but after much stress by the skin of my teeth I did.

I ordered some memory for my laptop, to be delivered special delivery, had it sent to my partner's work address so it wouldn't get pinched (still SE1 however). It didn't arrive on time despite having paid for special delivery. When I phone the sorting office (and eventually got through) they told me my item was there and I could pick it up rather than wait for the next delivery. I traipsed over there, queued up for about an hour, to be told it wasn't there by a very rude unhelpful woman who refused to deal with me any further. A slightly nicer chap tried to look for it for me, but only after I'd had a massive rant about wasted journeys and crap service. He didn't find it either. Eventually I received it a couple of days later...
Thursday 29 January 2004 4.57pm
I had the no-post-for-a-week-and-increasingly-contradictory-responses syndrome at the end of last yr as well, b-boy.

[in fact, it prompted me to start a thread here to see if it was just me]

It's bloody Kafkaesque. It also annoys me that they are winning (in the sense that I now almost never look for or expect mail at home as I have redirected most post that I care about/need to get on time to my work address, thus making even less work for the posties!)



...there's plenty more c**** in the cup.
Friday 30 January 2004 10.33am
I think Lang Rabbie is right, I think you and I must be the same person. For I too have all important post sent to the office - or dealt with online, and no longer care what happens in the post.

Actually that's not true, as I run a small voluntary organisation (turnover 25k pa) and am constantly getting late payment of invoices reminders. So I do care, but at least it doesn't cost me/us any money as we don't get early settlement discounts! I certainly avoid having cheques sent to me.
Friday 30 January 2004 11.36am
We'd better make sure we never meet then, mapmaker. [which is a shame, as i was looking forward to that weekend in the country]

You know what they say about the consequences of meeting one's doppelganger



...there's plenty more c**** in the cup.
Monday 2 February 2004 9.42am
Are we talking about Roger Moore's finest hour here Ivan?
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