Addresses we can't deliver to
Exceptions to the delivery rule
We're the only service that can offer this level of UK coverage. The postal services regulator Ofcom, requires us, under the Postal Services Act 2000, to deliver to every permanently occupied home, premise or approved delivery point in the UK, every working day - this is called the Universal Service Obligation (USO).
But there are a few delivery exceptions.
We cannot deliver to an address if it puts the health and safety of our staff at risk. For example, when an address can only be reached by crossing dangerous terrain. In this instance, we would suspend delivery to this address on a long-term basis. Or, if we suspend service following a specific incident. For example, if one of our staff is assaulted or attacked by a dog, the suspension is likely to be in the short-term.
We cannot deliver when it is difficult to access the address. The two most common reasons for a long-term suspension of this type are:
1. Where the address is on an island, or remote part of the mainland, with access only possible by boat or air. Where operationally possible, we will deliver on days that a scheduled plane or ferry service operates. If no scheduled services are available we try to deliver to islands and remote parts of the mainland once per week, as a minimum, where a contractor can be found.
2. Addresses on poorly maintained roads that require more than a 15 minute round trip by vehicle or foot can be categorised as difficult to access exceptions.
We may temporarily suspend delivery if access to the address is blocked. For example, if there is no letterbox.
You can also request reduced frequency deliveries or delivery to an alternative location if you want privacy or choose not to improve the condition of your private access route.
Alternative delivery points
Alternative delivery points for daily delivery include:
• A customer or Royal Mail roadside box
• A central point such as a site office in a caravan park
• A local Post Office® for collection
If you ask for an alternative delivery point, you will be liable for any costs incurred in arranging it. You may also be liable for costs if an alternative delivery point has to be set up if we are unable to deliver because of circumstances within your control. So it's important for customers to keep animals under control, and private roads and tracks in a good condition.
Appealing against a suspension of delivery
If you do not agree with the reasons why delivery to your address has been or will be suspended, or the proposed alternative delivery arrangements, you can appeal. The procedure will be outlined to you when you are told about the delivery suspension.
Your first appeal will be to your local Royal Mail Delivery Sector Manager. If they do not resolve your issue, stage two appeals can be made to the Regional Director of Q&SI, and if the case remains unresolved, the outcome will be determined by Ofcom.
• The decision to suspend delivery service is made by Royal Mail.
• You must appeal against this decision within one month to the Delivery Sector Manager.
• The decision on the appeal must made by Royal Mail within one month of receiving it.
• If you still don’t agree, you must appeal against this decision within one month to the Regional Director of Q&SI
• The Regional Director of Q&SI will review the case and give you a response within two months of receiving your appeal
• If your issue remains unresolved you can make a stage three appeal to Ofcom within one month
• There is no time limit for the final decision made by Ofcom
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We deliver to 99.9% of UK addresses, but there are a few exceptions.Read the full article