Monday, October 26, 2009


As the door opened you could hear a droning, five...four...three...two... then the door shut before the final  number was counted.  The shop mail was hastily placed on the reception counter and the flustered-looking postman rushed out, without even a greeting to the staff in the shop.  The urgency was to get back to the delivery van, press the off switch before the count of 'one' was complete.

The post delivery round is in a remote rural area, covering various villages and their businesses, the businesses  get priority for the morning delivery over domestic post.  No doubt, the postman had to get to the other villages and businesses on the route, each time, being counted out of his van with the individual deliveries and then being counted back.  No two places have their counters or mail boxes in the same place.

Five seconds is a hellish and unrealistic time scale to work to per mail drop.  What if it is not possible to park the van, (leaving the engine running for quick departure, which is illegal) close to where the mail needs to go.  The postman is forced to double park as close as he can get. Other road users be damned!  What if the conditions underfoot are slippery?  We tend to have very inclement conditions; it can be icy in Winter; if there is a gale blowing, a regular feature of our climate, that can be another obstacle to timed speed deliveries.  It is, in my view a recipe for an accident, it is also a recipe for developing, amongst other things, health problems. 


Flighty said...

It's one of the reasons why Royal Mail is in the state it is. I have little sympathy for either the postmen or management as I've had problems with both during the year which caused me no end of needless grief. xx

ZACL said...

I can imagine the problems in the urban settings. Remote and rural locations are different again. We stand to lose a great deal if the Royal Mail does not survive.

When I lived near your area, I knew my postman. There were two deliveries in those days. He told me I was the only householder who spoke to him, apart from when he had to obtain a signature at the door. I thought that was very sad. In return though, he was very helpful and informative if there were any difficulties.

These are multi-way relationships that have gone seriously wrong. I am not sure entirely why, who are we to believe? What is obvious is there are changes in the way society communicates now, though I am sure we do not have all the facts on that.

There are changes the way business practices can now be operated. I don't think what I saw the day the postman was 'marching on the double' was a very satisfactory practice. I hope they are not all like that.

Sympathies will be mixed.


TG said...

I think the post faces same problems everywhere, even here. I feel that people from rural areas will have to drive to towns or small towns to fetch their mail in the future. Maybe we'll get email notifications, hehe.

ZACL said...

If what you say happens, MKL, that will be a serious degrading of a postal service. What will we be paying for? There will be people who cannot go 30 or 40 miles (50-70kms) to collect mail.

We have to rely on our personal transport because our public transport is so limited.

your suggested scenario is one which would greatly disturb me.