Royal Mail Backs Stronger Protections On Post Box Network
Royal Mail has welcomed new safeguards on the number of post-boxes it must provide across the UK.
Ofcom, proposed back in March, that Royal Mail should be required to ensure 98% of all households across the country are within half a mile of a post box.
Royal Mail’s network currently stands at 115,500 post boxes. Covering less than half of the UK’s 121 postcode areas and only 15% of its geographic area. Royal Mail said the new safeguards would provide additional protection for postal services in rural communities.
Stephen Agar, managing director of consumer and network access at Royal Mail, said: “Nine out of ten customers consider Royal Mail a core part of the community – particularly in rural areas, where we are part of the lifeblood of day to day communication. Easy access to post boxes is an important part of this.”
Agar said Royal Mail’s post box network had remained stable for the past decade, and that the UK had the highest level of post box provision per kilometre of any western European nation.
“Amongst the 19 countries measured by the Universal Postal Union, only Japan has a higher geographic density of post boxes,” he said.
Royal Mail, which is expected to see some kind of privatisation within the next 12 months, will have to comply with its regulated service quality standards – including the proposed post box standards – under any change of ownership.
Its standards also include requirements that 99.9% of delivery routes are completed each day, and that 99.9% of access points are served each day.
The UK also has requirements in place for Post Office Ltd to provide a post office within a mile of 93.1% of the UK population, and within three miles of 99.7% of the population.