The dire situation with postal deliveries in Croydon could be far worse than even the most mail-deprived residents might have feared.
Inside Croydon readers from across the borough, and even in other areas covered by one of the CR post codes, have responded to last week’s report about the struggles at the Factory Lane sorting depot to get posties out and delivering sometimes vital items, including urgent packages ahead of NHS hospital appointments.
A Royal Mail insider has come forward to suggest that the severe staff shortages at the CR0 sorting depot on Factory Lane are the latest example of crass mismanagement, as following the long-running industrial dispute posties have left their jobs en masse, leaving the office badly under-staffed.
In the digital age, and with businesses such as Amazon and DPD hoovering up massive amounts of the parcel and packet delivery work, Royal Mail is a basket case declining business, but with a legal responsibility to maintain once-a-day deliveries.
All indications suggest that in Croydon, Royal Mail is not even maintaining reliable deliveries once a week.
Royal Mail chief executive Simon Thompson paid himself a £140,000 bonus last year, on top of his £540,000 salary – more than 23 times higher than that of the average Royal Mail worker (£25,700). Thompson is to leave his job at the end of next month.
Croydon residents, and iC readers, meanwhile, continue to get no service whatsoever from Royal Mail under Thompson.
One reader emailed us (well, you can hardly expect them to trust the post, can you?): “We have had no post whatsoever in over a week now. I am due to go for a hospital test at Queen Mary’s in Roehampton.
“On Thursday September 14 they posted me a pack with instructions of what I have to do for two days prior up the test, together with some medication I have to take for two days prior.
“It’s now Friday 22nd and still the pack hadn’t arrived, but nor has any other mail.
“So now today I am going to have to drive to the hospital to get a duplicate pack with instructions, as I have to start following the procedure from tomorrow. It’s ridiculous!!”
Another reader lives on Whitehorse Road, in the CR0 post code.
“I’ve not received post for over two weeks. Last week, I was meant to receive my daughter’s Zip Oyster card and a book bought from eBay which my daughter needs for school.
“This week I reordered the book from Amazon. This is a loss to the eBay trader who will need to refund me. TfL are resending the Zip card, but who knows when or even if it will ever arrive. Until then it’ll be more expensive for my daughter to travel to school by train.
“I’m also due to receive a new credit card in the next few days. Not sure what else I’m missing!
“I emailed Royal Mail and received a standard reply with no information. They had not bothered to find out what is going on in my area.”
A reader who lives in Warlingham has a CR6 postcode, which should mean that their post comes from a depot in Caterham. Different sorting office, same problems: “We have been having similar delivery problems for months, too. Last week, we had no delivery at all.
“On Tuesday this week, two Radio Times were delivered, one virtually a week out of date. I have had to report non-delivery to the publishers on numerous occasions, who just extend my subscription by a week each time.
“Speaking to various postmen they say it’s mainly down to lack of staff which is exasperated by the new working conditions which are being brought in by Royal Mail management.”
And our postie insider tells us: “It might be worth trying to find if they’ve had a spate of resignations recently.
“The year-long dispute ended fairly recently and anyone employed by Royal Mail on August 1 2023 qualified for two lump sum payments totalling £1,500 as part of the settlement.
“Although those are not paid until next week, I imagine some colleagues felt free and willing to resign as of August 1.”
Which possibly only exacerbates the failure to deliver a service in Croydon which has been noticeable for many readers over the course of several months.
“The current level of service is unfair on people who don’t use computers or smartphones, most of whom are elderly,” as one reader said.
Another, who had had parking permits undelivered, noted, “Croydon letter service now isn’t fit for purpose.”
And another reader asks whether its possible simply to visit the sorting depot to collect mail, rather than wait for deliveries that never happen. “It has been awful, I’ve been noticing no mail daily for months now!”
- Have YOU been experiencing delayed post deliveries? Or no deliveries at all? Write to Inside Croydon – by email to firstname.lastname@example.org – with details of your area and postcode, the last time you saw your postie, or how the delays have affected you. Please write “Royal Mail Fail” in the subject line
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