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Missing mail leaves woman stunned

PUBLISHED: 21:00 26 September 2001 | UPDATED: 10:34 03 March 2010

AN Ipswich woman was left astounded after she was told a letter she posted using Royal Mail's recorded delivery service had been lost on its journey.

Angela Snook, who lives on the Broke Hall estate in Ipswich, had sent the letter, which contained her son's acceptance letter for Hull University, by the service thinking it would be safe, or at the very least accounted for.

AN Ipswich woman was left astounded after she was told a letter she posted using Royal Mail's recorded delivery service had been lost on its journey.

Angela Snook, who lives on the Broke Hall estate in Ipswich, had sent the letter, which contained her son's acceptance letter for Hull University, by the service thinking it would be safe, or at the very least accounted for.

It soon became clear after a few days that the letter had not reached its final destination and so Mrs Snook and her son began making enquiries.

"My son John went on line to try and trace the letter but with no luck. He followed all the guidelines but there was no sign of it. Eventually we were told that they really did not know where it was and that it had been lost along the way."

It came as quite a shock to Mrs Snook and her son when they received a letter telling them that recorded delivery letters where not actually given any special treatment until they reached the sorting office of the letter's final destination.

"This made me laugh more than anything else because basically it is saying that the service you pay for is absolutely no different to first and second class mail until it has made a good chunk of its journey."

Luckily Mr Snook's place was safe as they acted quickly and got a new letter out to the university which actually made it this time.

Royal Mail spokeswoman said: " The letter Mrs Snook received is correct, recorded delivery mail goes the same route as first and second class mail but there are two differences which is the reason customers pay for the service. Firstly there is a signature collected at its final destination and secondly the letter or parcel will have a bar code on it which makes tracking it a lot easier. It can be scanned at many different points on its journey and I urge Mrs Snook to call our customer help line on 0845 740740."

If customers want further security they can pay for special delivery which guarantees the letter will arrive by a certain time the next day."

Royal Mail is trying to stem the tide of customer unease by agreeing a further period of industrial stability with CWU – the Communication Workers Union. An increase of industrial action by Royal Mail has been cited as a reason for deteriorating customer service and they are hoping this will now change.

Mick Linsell, Royal Mail's director for service delivery said: "Customers will have benefited from an improved service in August and Royal Mail will continue towards a goal of strike free business."

N If you have any stories good or bad about the postal service contact Victoria Knowles on 01473 282257 or e mail victoria.knowles@ecng.co.uk

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