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Harringay, Haringey - So Good they Spelt it Twice!

There has been a long running thread about ongoing delays to the post in N8 and N4 but for those who have missed it, I’ve pasted below a useful update from the Hornsey MP which sheds some light. It basically sounds as though the depot that serves us has been hit by a perfect storm of hugely increased volumes, far fewer staff and, intriguingly, perhaps a distance & location issue ... 

The other thread, with various tales of missing post, is here: https://www.harringayonline.com/forum/topics/are-local-postal-servi...

Dear friend,
I spoke with senior Royal Mail staff last week about the ongoing postal problems in N8 and N4 and they have today sent me this letter updating on some of the actions they are taking to try and resolve the matter. I hope you find it helpful.


During the meeting, I also asked about the possibility of re-opening a delivery office in N8. It was a real blow to the local community when Hornsey Sorting Office closed down in 2014. With the volume of parcels now being handled doubling in recent weeks and likely to remain high, it feels more important than ever that N8 and N4 mail is given the priority it deserves and that residents aren’t forced to take public transport, drive or cycle over to N19 to collect packages once delivery offices can safely reopen. I have written to the Chief Executive of Royal Mail to raise this proposal further.

I have also asked if Royal Mail can provide a contact for local managers for people with very specific concerns, and I will forward this on once I receive it.

Finally, I am very much aware that this still isn’t a normal service and whilst Royal Mail are hopeful that the additional staffing will improve matters and that they are through the worst, I know that many of you continue to experience problems. I have asked to be kept regularly updated and appreciate you continuing to share with me news of improvements or new problems that I can collate and raise with Royal Mail on your behalf.

Best wishes,


Member of Parliament for Hornsey & Wood Green

Tags for Forum Posts: coronavirus postal services, royal mail

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Royal Mail Collapse since March 2020

Very useful dialogue here. I live in a converted early 20th C Villa now with 7 flats so we would expect Mail every weekday. From the end of March it fell to 3x week, then 2x week and its nadir was 1x a week delivery in early April! then back to 2 or 3 x week. Its still not returned to normal after 11 weeks. Did get some reply to complaint basically saying they were shortstaffed. No direct communication ever, no apology, really poor.

It's the near collapse of once a good public service, presided by Tory privatisation and run down/austerity/ neglect. The worst in over 6o years! Probably worked better during the war. Cheers, Mark. N4 2AR

Are others still having issues with post arriving? I have about 5 or 6 parcels that I know have been dispatched via Royal Mail and and two of them are definitely at the Delivery Office (and have been for about a month), but we're now getting normal-ish letter deliveries and my husband (different surname, same address) has received some Royal Mail parcel deliveries recently, including some within a couple of days of ordering. I appreciate they have a backlog and I also understand that badgering them when they are trying to get through it is probably counter productive, but I want to know whether it's just me and I should be badgering, or if it's just a symptom of the backlog and others are still waiting.

It's better, but still slower than it should be. For us it seems like new items are slow - yet to see how slow. Older items in the backlog seem to be getting cleared 'from the top of the pile', i.e newest items of backlog first.

Thanks Hugh - that's helpful.

I find that letters are reasonably OK, some faster than others, but even the smallest package can take a month and that doesn't seem to be improving.

Thanks Vaneska, that's more or less consistent with my experience, except we have got more recently ordered stuff quite quickly. There seems to be a block of time where the parcels have gone into a black hole!

My 'barometer' for the state of package delivery has been my monthly coffee subscription.  It is sent on a 24hr Royal Mail service so under normal circumstances the coffee is roasted and dispatched on a Friday and I get it the next morning.  Throughout lockdown it has been taking 4 weeks to get here so there was a point in April, with no sign of the March delivery, that I had to go out and buy a pack of coffee locally.  Recently the previous month's delivery has been arriving precisely when the current one should have been coming through the post box.

Today I got my coffee from the 12 June roasting - so 2.5 weeks.  Progress of some sort.

My wife ordered some live plants from a nursery which promised a couple of days delivery. They arrived a month later, all dead of course. It's easy to blame Covid and reduced staff levels in this crisis, but it probably more accurate to blame a shortfall in the Royal Mail's monitoring and management of their own resources.

And today my coffee postal barometer is back to normal!  It arrived overnight as right and proper.  Also last week a package arrived from Spain which had been stuck in the system since mid-May.

Quick update: I'm not sure if it's divine intervention or that someone from the DO is reading this thread, but a couple of hours after posting, one of my long-term missing parcels turned up. High hopes for the rest now!


Yes they seem to be slowly catching up. I had a package arrive a couple of days ago that was sent out at the beginning of May. Hopefully they are getting through the backlog



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