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Fury as homes miss mail for three days; Staff sickness and teething problems blamed for postal service failures.

Byline: MARK HOOKHAM

HUNDREDS of homes in Liverpool are not receiving regular postal deliveries,it was revealed last night.

Residents in one south Liverpool street claimed they did not receive any mail for three days last week.

And on Tuesday postal workers failed to deliver mail to 14 streets around Goodison Park.

The Royal Mail last night admitted the recent scrapping of the second postal service had led to ``teething problems'' across the city and apologised to customers.

Retired postal worker Peter Woodward,55, said his house in Windlow Street,Walton in north Liverpool, was one of hundreds which received no mail on Tuesday.

Mr Woodward, who retired in 1998, said failing to deliver mail was a sackable offence when he worked for Royal Mail.

He said: ``They have got an obligation to provide at least one delivery a day and they are failing.

``People pay for their stamps and want letters to be delivered on time. I went to Copperas Hill (the central Liverpool sorting office) to complain and was told the customer service department was in Manchester.

``It seems to me they are making a decision that they are so busy on some days that they can't cover all their beats.''

Lorraine Weaver, 24,described the postal service in area Asbridge Street,Princes Park,as ``terrible''.

She said: ``Last week we received no post on three days and then everything came at once on one day.

``We asked the postman what was going on and he said the regular postman was off sick and he was having to cover the round.''

Since the beginning of the year, Royal Mail officials have introduced a new service which has resulted in deliveries being cut to one a day.

Businesses are supposed to get their mail first and residents have been told their mail will arrive at any time before noon.

Royal Mail spokesman Graham Moore last night told the Daily Post he could not dispute any of the reports of failed deliveries. He said: ``We are aware that because of the extent of the teething problems that maybe once we were unable to get mail out to a particular area.

``We apologise to anyone affected. It was exacerbated in the Walton area yesterday because we had a lot of absences through sickness.''

Mark Walsh,branch secretary for the Communication Workers Union,fears poor service could lead to an increase in assaults.

He said: ``We have had complaints from staff that they are getting sworn at while on their rounds.

``We are concerned about the effect this will have on public confidence in the postal service and the safety of our staff.''

Earlier this month, theDaily Post reported Liverpool businesses were not receiving mail until midday.

Some of the leading business figures have demanded a return to the former schedule.
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Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Apr 15, 2004
Words:469
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