Villager left bemused over changes to collection times

BOXFORD: David Lamming has picked up the point that Royal Mail is changing post collection times and there are messages on the postboxes saying mail has to be posted before 9am now (not 4.30pm as it was before.) ANL-140909-171439009
BOXFORD: David Lamming has picked up the point that Royal Mail is changing post collection times and there are messages on the postboxes saying mail has to be posted before 9am now (not 4.30pm as it was before.) ANL-140909-171439009
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A Boxford man says he will demand an explanation from Royal Mail’s chief executive about changes to postbox collection times.

David Lamming says planned “efficiencies” by the company have prompted him to write to chief executive Moya Greene, and the Royal Mail manager at the sorting office in Churchfield Road, Sudbury.

It comes after he spotted a sign on his local postbox in Holbrook Barn Road, saying new collection arrangements will take effect from Monday.

He said: “We have to post our letters no later than 9am Monday to Friday – instead of 4.30pm as at present – to ensure delivery the next day, and by 7am on Saturday to ensure delivery the following Monday.

“Otherwise, we have to travel to the delivery office in Churchfield Road in Sudbury.”

Royal Mail confirmed it is intending to introduce new collection times at thousands of postboxes across the UK to save money.

It says it will ensure there is always a postbox where residents can make a late posting within half-a-mile of those postboxes moving to earlier collection times.

But Mr Lamming said: “The notice posted on our box does not say where exactly that late posting box is.

“The postbox in Groton Street has a similar notice but it is 0.9 of a mile from Boxford Post Office. It would be of interest to know which box Royal Mail intends to nominate as the late posting box within half a mile.

“If it is the box opposite The Croft, the wall containing that box was demolished a few days ago in an accident and, so far, has not been replaced.”

Mr Lamming said the postbox on his estate serves more than 60 houses.

He added: “It is centrally positioned and convenient for residents, several of whom are elderly and infirm. Are they to be expected to walk half-a-mile to Boxford Post Office or drive there?”

A Royal Mail spokeswoman said: “Over the next few months, we will move between 45,000 to 50,000 of our postboxes to an earlier collection time, with the mail picked up by the postman or woman as part of their delivery round.

“Changing our final collection times to reflect user needs and volumes will unlock the opportunity for efficiency savings.”

In future, customers in isolated locations will be able to give stamped letters to a postman or woman when they call to make their delivery, she added.