Postwatch claim tabs not in use

ALMOST half of all post boxes in the East of England do not display the times of the final daily collections, a survey claimed today.Of the 53 per cent that did display collection times, 12pc gave the incorrect information.

ALMOST half of all post boxes in the East of England do not display the times of the final daily collections, a survey claimed today.

Of the 53 per cent that did display collection times, 12pc gave the incorrect information.

The survey was conducted by Postwatch East of England, the watchdog for postal services, in August and September.

It was carried out after a survey at the start of the year found that 92pc of post boxes in the East of England did not display the information tabs.

At that time Adam Crozier, chief executive of Royal Mail, gave a personal assurance that the tabs, which provide the collection information, would be re-installed by the summer of this year.

Royal Mail originally removed information tabs from the fronts of post boxes in 2002 following several customer complaints.

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But the company then agreed to re-install them so customers would know when their letters had to be posted by.

Dr Charles Winstanley , chairman of Postwatch East of England, said: “Customers have said that they want and need collection tabs.

“Despite numerous reassurances from Royal Mail that tabs have now been deployed in our region, our research shows that this is not true.

“Following compilation of the national figures, we met with Royal Mail on September 20 to discuss this issue and presented the findings from the recent survey.

“We received assurances yet again that tabs have now been fully deployed to collection boxes which can hold a tab and were promised a full list of exceptions in the region.”

A spokesman for Royal Mail said: “We have improved the collection plates on our posting boxes to make it even clearer to customers the time of the last collection.

“We have also invested in new technology so that in the vast majority of postboxes, there is a barcode inside which is scanned by the collection driver which gives us a record of the actual time the collection is made.”

Postwatch is now asking customers to let them know of any collection boxes without tabs or those displaying incorrect information.

Please note down the collection box reference number which can be found on the bottom left hand corner of the display plate and telephone 08456 013265.

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