Less we forget, a postman is not going on a leisurely stroll, he is carrying with him a heavy load, has to fiddle with gates, then has to actually get the post in through the letter box. If there are parcels to be delivered , doors have to be knocked, doorbells rung. My postman this morning had a loaded bicycle and a shoulder bag.
Having delivered leaflets a couple of times, I know it is not an easy task, fiddling with gates, trying to push through a letter box which seems determined not to let anything pass.
This morning my postman knocked at my door. He was delivering a parcel, hot from the publisher ASO an excellent first novel by Lindsey MacKie, a chilling account of the future, England 2050, a cross between Brave New World, Nineteen Eighty-four and We by Russian writer Yevgeny Ivanovich Zamyatin and The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood. An album of music by Lindsey MacKie accompanies the novel.
My postman told me they are allocated 6 seconds to knock on a door! Unless standing behind the door, this does not give anyone the time to answer a door, let alone the elderly and infirm. Nothing is more annoying than to answer a door to see tail lights vanishing down the street.
It is also nice to be able to chat to ones postman. If nothing else, good customer relations.
The net result of this latest crass stupidity from Royal Mail is that postmen are not able to complete their round in the alloted time. This means they are are either working unpaid into their own time to get the mail delivered, or mail is brought back to the sorting office undelivered to be taken out on the following day.
Royal Mail needs to get its own house in order.
I am one of the lucky ones who gets a morning delivery, many now don't. What is the use of an afternoon delivery, if correspondence needs to be actioned and replied to?
Post boxes no longer state the times of collection, just the last collection. Or maybe that is the only collection.
Sunday collection was scrapped recently.
Victorians had several deliveries a day. It was possible to write a letter and get a reply the same day, if need be confirming a lunchtime appointment.
We have seen wave after wave of Post Office closures. This hits hard the local economy, especially rural economies, something the government fails to take into account when allocating its subsidy to keep these Post Offices open. The government itself has led to a large amount of business lost from Post Offices when it insisted claimants had benefits paid direct into a bank not through a GIRO cheque. Job Centres use a private courier service for their mail, not Royal Mail.
Not far from my house a main Post Office closed several years ago. We now have to use another Post Office where the service is appalling. The irony is that the old post office is still open for people to collect parcels, but not to provide any other postal service.
I was forced to use a local Post Office at the weekend. The service was surly. The woman who served me refused to take my parcels and insisted they be left on the counter. I looked later, mine and other parcels were still sitting on the counter. Only recently, a person at this Post Office was convicted of fraud for which they received a prison sentence.
I asked another Post Office about this and they said they should have taken my parcels and that I should complain. They gave me an 0845 number to call.
I wasted five minutes of my time and money going through various options. I then had to listen to a speech about the Post Office, to be then told all our operators are busy and I was cut off!