Hackney postie Diane sends a broadside to TNT

VR postbox Nevill Rd Stoke Newington London N16 240214 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Diane Abbott (supplied pic)
Doorstepping: Abbott revisits her postie days

HACKNEY MP Diane Abbott has launched a blistering attack on a rival mail service.

The member for Hackney North and Stoke Newington told Parliament that TNT Post was “unfair” and gave “very poor service”.

The Labour left-winger said that in London mail had been dumped under bushes and in one area, a close, TNT workers had “delivered all the letters through one door, expecting that person to hand them out to their neighbours”.

She said: “TNT workers rely on Royal Mail workers to tell them where to go. All that is not only a threat to the universal postal service, but a poor service.” The competition regime was “defective”, not genuinely competitive.

Abbott added: “TNT does not have the obligations of the Royal Mail. Something needs to be done about the competition regime so that companies such as TNT are obliged to live up to the obligations that rest on the Royal Mail. Otherwise, the consequence will be not just a threat to the universal postal service in remote areas of Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales but a threat to the quality of the postal service that we all enjoy.

“The importance of the postal service in all our lives, and the commitment and professionalism of postmen and postwomen, should not be understated.

“I had the privilege of visiting my local sorting office in Stamford Hill, Hackney, just before Christmas; many members visit theirs at that time. 

“I saw how hard postmen [sic] work and how much we rely on a stable workforce with a commitment to their work and an ongoing knowledge of their areas to provide the service that all our constituents deserve.”

She was probably the only MP who had actually been a postie. It was a holiday job – “a few years ago”.

Nick Wells, CEO TNT Post, told Loving Dalston: “All postal operators operate under the same regulatory conditions on mail integrity when delivering mail and TNT Post adheres to and enforces the mail integrity code.

“On the very rare occasions when an operative has failed to deliver mail we will take the necessary disciplinary action.”

Competition was good for the postal sector and TNT was creating thousands of quality jobs, including for young and long-term unemployed people.

The uniform penny post was established in the British Isles in 1840. The UK’s ConDem government privatised the Royal Mail last autumn 2013.

David Altheer 220714  

* Backstory: Hackney’s old postboxes 

* The picture above has been supplied. The pic at top shows a postbox in Nevill Road, Stoke Newington

* Emboldened underscored words in most cases indicate a hyperlink, a reader service rare among websites. If a link does not work, it is probably because the site to which the URL refers has not been maintained.

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