Courier February 2012 - myroyalmail

myroyalmail.com

Courier February 2012 - myroyalmail

the royal mail newsPAPER

february 2012

.com

record

breakers

Our Payroll Giving scheme earns

a Guinness World Record.

see page 9

our

Big

plan


2 February 2012 courier@abcomm.co.uk

Moya

My View

Greene

We have made

progress

with our

modernisation

programme But

we need to keep

delivering

MACHINE MILESTONE

MARKS SORTING SUCCESS

MOYA ON DELIVERING…

FOR OUR PEOPLE

We will once again be celebrating

the achievements of colleagues at

the annual Chairman’s Awards for

Excellence in June. I am pleased to

announce there are two new

awards this year, one for our

‘heroes’ and the other for someone

who has really delivered change in

our organisation. Please nominate

someone you think deserves to be

recognised. I am looking forward to

meeting the winners. Find out

more at myroyalmail.com

The numbers have now been

crunched, and I am delighted to say

you delivered a very good Christmas

performance.

Thank you again for your efforts to

serve our customers.

In the four weeks before Christmas, we

delivered 10 million more parcels than

last year. We will build on our capability

in this area, taking advantage of this market

trend and using new technology. The

world of retailing is changing to e-tailing.

Our modernisation programme is

starting to deliver results. We sorted 75%

of mail automatically, enabling more of

our people to spend time delivering the

mountain of cards and packets.

This month we reached a major milestone

on our transformation journey. The

final two machines that sequence mail in

walk order were delivered to Stevenage.

Their arrival is the culmination of a tremendous

effort across the UK to automate

our sorting process. Well done to everyone

involved. The success of the programme

shows just what we can achieve

when we work together.

We have an ambitious objective to be

the very best delivery and media business

in the UK. This issue of Courier focuses on

what needs to happen if we are to achieve

this.

Brilliant at the basics

The next year is critical to achieving our

plan.

First of all, we have to be brilliant at the

basics. We have made progress with our

modernisation programme. But we need

to keep delivering.

If we want to be the best, we must deliver

on what we promise. There is a lot of

Final delivery... Stevenage

mail centre welcomed the

last compact sequencing

machines this month

focus on improving our customers’ experience.

We will be sharing more with you in

future issues.

Build a commercial future

We cannot build a commercial future

without freedom to compete on a level

playing field with other companies.

We have not been making enough

money to pay our bills for a long time. As

you know, we have been constrained by

regulation. Current rules mean we can’t

operate with commercial terms and conditions

and charge competitive prices,

giving our rivals an unfair advantage.

We are waiting for Ofcom to announce

a new approach to regulation.

We are doing all we can to get a fair

deal.

Getting things sorted...

a CSS in action at

Jubilee mail centre

Drive profitable growth

With letters declining, we must look beyond

the envelope to drive profitable

growth.

You know from the rise in how many

packets we deliver that this market has

huge potential for us. Delivering these

packets at the first attempt is key to meeting

our customers’ expectations and winning

more business.

Direct mail is really simple and one of the

most cost-effective ways for firms to advertise

and sell. We want them to think of us as an

extension to their marketing department.

This year will be a challenging one for us.

We have a lot to achieve. There are hurdles

to overcome. We must stay on our game.

But if we do, we can build a successful future

for our company.

IN THE COMMUNITY

We are Guinness World Record

holders. What a fantastic

achievement. Our Payroll Giving

scheme contributes money to

more charities than any other. You

make a difference to the

communities you work and live in.

We should all be proud of what we

do to help so many good causes.

More on page 9.

FOR OUR CUSTOMERS

Specialist businesses often have

key times of the year when they

look to make the most amount of

money. Valentine’s Day is one of

those occasions. Florist Bunches

was relying on us to help their

business boom, or should that be

bloom. Read more on page 8.

Check out myroyalmail.com for

weekly stories of how we are

helping customers.

get in touch with moya

Moya is keen to hear from you

through the Just Say It channel.

Moya will reply to all who take

part. To get in touch, email

Justsayit@royalmail.com or write

to Just Say It, Freepost

MEET THE TEAM

Editor-in-chief: Mark Glover

Email: mark.glover@royalmail.com

got a

story?

contact

us

AB editor: Lisa Mobley

Email: courier@abcomm.co.uk

Contact the

Courier team

at AB

Publishing on

020 7922

5670

Address: Courier

24-26 Great

Suffolk Street,

London

SE1 0UE

my royalmail.com

myroyalmail editor: Jo Gurman

Email: mrm@abcomm.co.uk

You can land a

pair of tickets

to a top

football match

– see page 16

SPOT THE

BALL AND WIN

Advertising

If you are a business looking to

advertise in Courier, please call

020 7441 4769 to discuss

suitability, availability and rates.

Distribution

To notify HR of a change of

address, employees should email

HRSC.Personal.Data@royalmail.

com or write to The HR Service

Centre, Pond Street, Sheffield

S98 6HR. Pensioners should

email: pensions.data.

maintenance@royalmail.co.uk

or write to

Pensions Services Centre, PO

Box 500, Chesterfield S49 1WX.


Our situation

3

bridging the gap

Regulation has facilitated rapid growth of competition,

Less mail. More

competitors. Revenue

down. The number of

addresses we deliver

to is increasing. It’s an

equation that doesn’t

add up.

2000

From

2007

to

2011

severely diluting our revenues

The BusIness

has not

generated

cash for

some time

+£70m

–£254m

Traditional mail volumes are in decline

million items

20,000

18,000

16,000

14,000

12,000

10,000

8,000

19,645 million

2007 2008 2009 2010 2011

number of addresses we deliver to:

20%

DECLINE IN

5 YEARS

15,909 million

2012

2003 2005 2007 2009

26.9m 27.4m 28m 28.5m 28.8m


4 February 2012

4

Our Plan

There are three main parts to our plan. The first two need to happen

at the same time so we can achieve the third: driving profitable growth.

Be brilliant at the basics…

• Modernise our operations

• Offer right products at the

right prices

• Deliver what we promise our

customers

Kitted out... modern equipment and ways

of working will help us to cope with

the rise in packets

Regulation has facilitated rapid growth of competition,

severely diluting our revenues

Build a commercial future…

• Freedom to compete like any other company

• Government to take on our historic pension deficit

• Attract private capital for much-needed

investment in our business

2000

2000

100%

Key

Mail we deliver for our

competitors

Commercial freedom... we need to set our own prices

so we can get a fair rate of return for the work we do

2011

45%

55%

Drive profitable growth…

Premier services... retailing is changing to

e-tailing, so we must respond to the

changing mail market

• Provide premier parcels and letter services

• Develop our media business

• Innovate with new services for our customers


Your part in our Plan

February 2012 5

5

DELIVERY CHANGES

Working well together... Teresa shares

a van with Colin Cattell

More changes are happening

every week to introduce

new ways of working and new

equipment to deliver fewer

letters and more packets.

Around 400 offices have already

introduced revisions, with postmen

and women now sharing vans and

using trolleys. Many units will do the

same this year.

Barrow-in-Furness and Rugby

delivery offices have recently undergone

revisions to make the

changes.

At Rugby, Teresa Davies says: ‘I

can understand that the business

has to save money and we all have

to become more efficient. The new

way of working is all about common

sense and it very much comes down

to individuals working well together.’

scan

this

code

to

read

what

staff

have

to say

PROVIDE PREMIER

PARCEL SERVICES

You’re nothing in the packets

business unless you offer

a tracking service.

Royal Mail Tracked is used by business

customers like TalkTalk, which

uses it to deliver broadband routers

out of our Princess Royal distribution

centre in London.

Operator

Suthakaran

Kumarasamy says: ‘Tracked is a relatively

new part of the business and

we’re all keen to do it as well as possible.

We want to keep improving our

figures so our customer gets the best

possible service.’

scan

this

code

to

read

the

full

story

Packets on the up... Suthakaran

Kumarasamy worked on a Tracked

shipment for TalkTalk

Turn to page 8 to

discover how we are

delivering on what we

promise for a flower

company


6 February 2012 courier@abcomm.co.uk

6

Our Plan

MODERNISATION

IN NUMBERS

last but not least

New arrival... the machine arrives at

Stevenage and (inset) the project

team marks the milestone

Using state-of-the-art technology

to sort mail and deliver it using new

equipment is key to our modernisation

programme.

We have to lower costs faster than the

fall in how many items we handle.

We made good progress in 2011, as

you’ll see below. This year we will need

to achieve a lot more.

43

mail centres,

126 delivery offices

and 13 logistics

sites using world

class mail

so far

more than

800

new or

upgraded CSSs

AND iLSMs

ALmost

40,000

PDAs (postal digital

assistants)

in use

1,600

high capacity

trolleyS

and 17,000

lightweight

trolleys

deployed

Nearly

6,500

new, smaller

delivery vans

on the road

The final two small walk sequencing

machines have arrived

in Stevenage – marking a major

milestone on our modernisation

journey.

The machines are now being set up as

part of a mail preparation unit.

They are the 573rd and 574th compact

sequence sorters (CSS machines) installed

across our business.

These clever bits of kit sequence mail to

exact walk order. By sorting mail more efficiently

in this way, delivery postmen and

women have less preparation to do before

going out on delivery.

That means they can spend longer on

their walks, helping them to deliver the increase

in packets and Signed For items we

now handle.

We are also installing intelligent letter

sorting machines (iLSMs) and upgrading

integrated mail processors (IMPs) as part

of our plans to automate our processes

and sort as much mail as we can by machine.

Walk sequencing project manager Bryan

Macefield says: ‘This is the successful

conclusion to a major programme deploying

new technology in the business. The

challenge now is to use them to best effect

to improve efficiency and achieve our delivery

point sequenced target of 74%.’

scan

this

code

For

more

on

this

story


For daily news, visit

myroyalmail.com

February 2012 7

Pensions –

the latest

Our company secretary Jon Millidge updates you on progress with the pension proposal.

It’s been another busy

month on the pension front.

We are working hard to make

sure we’re ready for the Government

to take on our historic pension

liabilities. We hope the transfer

will take place at the end of March.

The change will give pension members

greater security. But the transfer

depends on getting approval

from the EU Commission.

The amount the business has to

pay to the Royal Mail Pension Plan

each year towards clearing the deficit

is a crippling burden on us. If

the Government gets the green

light to take this away from us, the

financial health of the company will

be greatly improved.

You may have seen that the

Government has appointed an independent

chairman, Alan Pickering,

to help manage the new pension

scheme it will set up to provide

the benefits being transferred to it.

Alan has a vast amount of experience

in the pensions sector. He currently

sits on the Board of the Pensions

Regulator and was previously

chairman of the National Association

of Pension Funds.

The Government is also putting

together the specialist team that

will be responsible for the day-today

management of its new

scheme.

We believe these changes give

members greater security.

It’s very important that you understand

the changes that are taking

place. So we will be keeping everyone

updated regularly. Once the

EU Commission has made its decision,

we will be writing to you all to

explain what is happening and how

it affects you. In the meantime, you

can contact the Pensions Service

Centre if you have any questions.

open

door

policy

guest EDITOR’S CoLUMN

Adam Siniarski, collection

and delivery office manager,

Northfield delivery office

As you will see

on page 6, the last

two CSS machines

have been installed

in Stevenage. This

is a great story as it

marks a milestone

in the installation of

machinery.

It is important that

we maximise the use of

every machine across

the business, to ensure

we put as much mail as

we can in walk order.

I was interested to

see the visual treatment

Courier gave to the

facts and figures about

why the business has

to modernise (page

3). It shows the stark

situation we are in and

the reasons why we

need to introduce new

ways of working.

Also, there is another

excellent pull-out

about World Class Mail

(WCM). If your unit

is not involved in the

WCM programme yet,

the latest insert is well

worth a read.

I like the way it breaks

down the jargon to

make these stories

accessible for those

of us not yet familiar

with the programme. It

shows how the WCM is

a chance for everyone

to try new things and

progress their careers.

Spacious and modern... Paul Greenaway chats about

the changes in the branch with Rhian Hamer

Pictures: david cotter

Post Office and Royal Mail signed a

10-year deal last month to ensure customers

continue to enjoy unrivalled postal

services.

The agreement is great news for Post Office.

The business is striving to grow its range of financial

services products and build its range of government

services work.

And significant investment from the Government

– the largest in the history of Post Office – will help it

transform around 6,000 branches into two new

models.

The main model for larger post offices has

open plan counters, special services for small

business customers, longer opening hours and

self-service areas.

The local model for smaller branches sees

security screens removed to make a bigger retail

space. Post Office services will move to the retail

counter, so customers can access these services

earlier in the morning and later at night.

There are already 15 main branches and more

than 150 locals up and running.

Subpostmaster Fiona Griffiths runs a main

model branch at Blackwood in Gwent, Wales. She

says: ‘Customers are really positive about our

opening hours and having everything under one

roof. The open plan format means it’s easier to

deal with customers. They feel more valued, able

to communicate more freely and find the experience

more friendly and inviting.’

Postman Paul Greenaway collects from the

branch. ‘It’s more convenient for customers,’ he

says. ‘It does look completely different inside.

Everything’s open plan so it feels spacious and

modern.’

Positive effect... Subpostmaster Fiona and

Chris Hogg at Blackwood branch

Fancy filling the guest editor’s chair?

Email courier@abcomm.co.uk


8 February 2012

customer corner

Miles of smiles

win!

courier@abcomm.co.uk

Win a

stunning

Bunches bouquet

WIN one of the beautiful Platinum

range of bouquets from Bunches,

worth £40.99, by entering our

simple competition.

q. How much did bunches

spend with us last year?

A good bunch … Karen Bradshaw, Stephanie Wyer,

Debra Cottart, Catherine Armstrong, Kevin Storey

and Reece Beard from Nottingham mail centre

scan

this

code

For

more

on

this

story

Send your answer, together with your full

name, work location, contact number and

home address to couriercompetitions@

abcomm.co.uk with ‘Bunches competition’

in the subject header. Or post your answer

on a postcard to Bunches competition,

24-26 Great

Suffolk Street,

London SE1

0UE, by 16

March 2012.

We’ll pick one

lucky winner

from the

correct entries.

by hilary robertson

Flower business Bunches is a key customer,

spending £1.1 million with us last

year.

As busy times like Valentine’s, the team at Nottingham

mail centre sends a group of our people

over to process the packages.

Kevin Storey was part of the Christmas team. He

says: ‘We take the Bunches packages straight off the

packing line and sort them into their destinations.

‘It’s a better way of working with them, as it causes

less of an impact on the other mail centre operations.

The packets are sorted quicker and the flowers are on

their way to the destination really quickly.’

Account manager Naomi Parr makes sure Bunches

receives the best service. She says: ‘We originally

helped by ensuring orders could be placed for their

flowers through our Post Offices, so we have literally

helped them grow from the flower stall it used to be

to the big company it’s become today.’

Neighbourly act... Pontardawe postman

Gary Ferguson leaves a parcel with

a neighbour when a

customer is out

Everybody needs

good neighbours

by BEN Mccormick

older people who find it difficult to come into

the office to collect their parcels.

‘It’s also helping back at the office too, as

we’re not as busy in enquiries so we can get on

with carrying out other essential tasks.’

Customers around the country are

avoiding time-consuming trips to callers’

offices thanks to our delivery to

neighbours trial in some areas.

Delivery offices involved are noticing a difference.

At Pontardawe in south Wales, staff have noticed

they are bringing back fewer items to the

office. Feedback from customers is good as well.

‘It’s a good idea and is working well,’ says

postman Gary Ferguson. ‘It’s common sense really

and it’s keeping customers happy, especially

scan

this

code

For

more

on

this

story


For daily news, visit myroyalmail.com February 2012 9

For the record... (from left) postman Peter Fagg,

Godfrey Jones, Imtiyaz Chawan, Sandra and

regional collection planner Marek Toombs

record-breakers!

by Tory frost

Guinness World Records honours the

tallest, shortest and fastest people on the

planet, and now it has recognised that we

employ some of the most generous.

Representatives from Guinness World

Records presented us with a certificate for the

highest number of UK-registered charities

donated to by a Payroll Giving scheme – an

achievement colleagues at the event were very

proud of.

Tonbridge delivery office postwoman and

veteran fundraiser Sandra Pizzey said: ‘It’s a great

achievement. Payroll Giving is really easy

because the money comes out of your pre-tax

salary, and you just forget about it. You don’t have

to budget for it.’

Royal Mail has raised more than £45 million

through Payroll Giving since 1989, shared

between a record-breaking 975 charities.

scan

this

code

For

more

on

this

story

choose our charity

OLYMPICS

22MONDAYS TO GO...

powerful message

THE London 2012 Olympic Games bring plenty of

unique business opportunities.

Dedicated Olympics champions in our media

team are approaching Olympics sponsors and other

businesses to sell in direct mail as a way of making

the most of their tie-in with the Olympics.

We’ve already worked with EDF Energy, one of the

Games sponsors.

Media consultant Caroline Marsh says: ‘EDF

approached us with a challenge – help us get the best

possible opportunities we can from our sponsorship.

‘A team of us, including Willie Beaton, our client

director for EDF Energy, and Mike Rowell as media

consultant, came up with a plan, which we presented

to EDF’s top team. As a result, EDF sent out a

promotional loyalty pack including a London 2012 pin

badge and a competition to win tickets to all its dual

fuel customers, and we benefited from the extra direct

mail business.

‘The Olympics is a fantastic one-off opportunity for

Royal Mail.’

Media consultant Jon Skitt agrees: ‘It’s a great

opportunity for us personally, too. We’ve been charged

with finding Olympics-related business – and helping

customers use the backdrop of London 2012 to create

targeted and imaginative Direct Mail. To be involved

with the Olympics even in a small way is fantastic –

it’s the event everyone is talking about.’

One-off opportunity...

Caroline with the

EDF campaign

Don’t forget you

can still nominate a

colleague who has

played a part in

modernisation, great

customer service or

improvements such as

safety.

There are 10 pairs of opening

ceremony tickets up for grabs.

See myroyalmail.com for details.

WIN

Olympics

tickets!

We’re launching a new Charity of the

Year partnership this spring, and you

will soon have the opportunity to

choose the charity you’d most like.

Working closely with the CWU, we have

narrowed the choice down to three charities.

We’ll announce the shortlist soon, but all

three cover the whole of the UK. You’ll be

able to vote for your preferred charity in the

employee survey in April, so everyone can

play a part in the decision.

Our current partnership with Barnardo’s,

which has been in place since June 2008,

ends on 31 March this year. This means

there’s still time to boost the total raised for

Barnardo’s.

We’ll match any money you donate

between now and 31 March, up to a

maximum of £25k. You can donate to

Barnardo’s at www.charitiestrust.org/

companies/rmg

Additionally, we need any money raised

in your office to be banked before 31 March.

So please check your office for any

Barnardo’s collection tins or buckets you

might still have, fill them up and get your

money in! If you need a paying-in slip,

contact Charities Trust on 0151 286 5129 or

0870 708 78 78.

You’ve already raised more than

£2 million during the partnership. This has

helped Barnardo’s transform the lives of

vulnerable children across the UK.

Look out for more news on Barnardo’s,

and further information about the next

charity partnership, in the coming weeks.

Phone: 084 50 57 57 50

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courier@abcomm.co.uk For daily news, visit myroyalmail.com February 2012 11

ZAP makes you stop and think... Ronnie and Claire

have changed the way they drive

Farnham Drivers

Farnham driver Claire Thornton

‘The programme brings up stuff you wouldn’t

ordinarily think about and has definitely changed

my attitude to work. I do rural deliveries and there

are a lot of unpredictable difficulties you have to

deal with. My instructor pointed out that I often

drove close to the cars in front of me, so now I slow

down slightly as a result. After the practical parts, we

had question and answer sessions that ensured we

got the most out of the day. It wasn’t like a test at all;

it was more informative and helpful than anything

else. I gained a lot from ZAP on a personal level.’

Farnham driver Ronnie Lemon

‘When you have been driving for a few years, it’s easy

to forget certain things or slip into bad habits. I went

into the programme with an open mind, and the

sessions were good fun. We covered a lot of

reversing manoeuvres, evasion techniques and

observation using the mirrors. If you’ve had a little

scrape or a bump then it’s good to be tutored and get

some pointers so you’re not in a situation like it

again. ZAP really makes you stop and think, so I

would definitely recommend it.’

Driving down accidents

As logistics director, driver safety is top of Tony Fox’s priority list.

At the helm

Tony’s team is already scoring

a number of notable successes,

not least a 28% reduction in road

traffic collisions in the last 18

months, and a 56% reduction in

accidents overall in three years.

‘While road traffic collisions continue

to reduce, it’s hard when we lose one of

our own,’ says Tony. ‘That’s the main

reason we want all our 90,000 drivers

to take care and pay more attention; it’s

about keeping our people safe.

Road to

Completion

A qualification

vital to all drivers

of vehicles over

3.5 tonnes was

introduced

nationwide in

September 2009.

The Driver

Certificate of

Professional

Competence (DCPC)

is mandatory training

required by European

law and its first cycle has to be

completed by September 2014.

We have 12,000 drivers who

qualify for the 35 hours of training,

split into five modules, and it has to be

scan this

code to

read our

interview

with tony

in full

‘Interestingly, most accidents occur

in our own yards, at junctions or

when colleagues are driving slowly,

so we’ve been trialling specific training

for high-risk drivers and it is really

paying off. Over the next few months,

we’ll focus on “slow manoeuvring” as

we roll out the training.’

completed every five years.

Operational learning account

manager Andy Inkster says: ‘We

have been delivering DCPC training

since January 2010 and are currently

completing the first two seven-hour

modules.

‘New drivers have to complete an

initial qualification as part of their test

to drive vehicles and then 35 hours

training every five years, but those

already holding their licence when the

DCPC arrived in 2009 will only have to

complete the latter.

‘Drivers who don’t complete the

training in the specified timescales

won’t be able to drive vehicles over

3.5 tonnes for commercial use.’

‘It wasn’t

like a test at

all; it was more

informative and

helpful than

anything else. i

gained a lot

from zap.’

by BEN HALL

Having the largest vehicle fleet in the UK

means the safety of our drivers is always a

top priority.

The Zero Accidents Programme, introduced in 2010,

is committed to significantly improving our road safety

performance.

One of the latest ZAP initiatives being trialled with

drivers around the country is Primary Training. This includes

pre-use vehicles checks, followed by three hours

of in-cab tuition with a qualified instructor, targeting the

main collision types experienced by our drivers.

Programme manager Mike Stockton believes ZAP

is helping us on the road to becoming a zero accident

organisation on the road.

‘We’re committed to equipping our people with the

right skills so they are recognised as professional and

safe drivers,’ says Mike.

‘Results so far have been very encouraging, with road

traffic collision rates dramatically reduced.’

Farnham delivery office is one of the programme’s

success stories – see right.

All the drivers there have taken part, and the statistics

show it’s working.

ZAP will continue to train drivers throughout the year,

as well as promoting the Safe Driving Code of Practice

and 5S (Sort, Set, Shine, Standardise, Sustain), an initiative

to keep vehicles in tip-top condition.

what is zap training?

n Moving forward

n Reversing and parking

n Vehicle control

n Defensive driving – driving to suit the

conditions and environment of the road

n Commentary driving – where the

driver voices the potential hazards they

can see in the road ahead, such as a

school

n Width awareness

n Three-point turns

n Hazard perception

scan this

code

to read

how our

sites got

involved

with road

safety

week

Road Traffic Collisions have dropped

nationwide among drivers who have

done the training:

After slow manoeuvring training:

down 88%

After primary driver training:

down 89%

After young driver training:

down 52%

simple steps can

save lives

Following some simple steps can make

all the difference to staying safe behind

the wheel.

1. Preparation

n Always do routine daily and weekly vehicle

checks

n Always clear your vehicle of snow and ice to

maximise visibility – don’t set off until clear

n Never drive with tyres below the legal limit

n Remember to always report vehicle faults –

don’t run the risk or leave it for someone else.

2. Drive according to the conditions

n Driving too fast for the conditions causes, or

contributes significantly to road crashes and their

severity.

n Always reduce your driving speed in

response to conditions. It can take up to 10

times longer to stop in wet and icy conditions

than on a dry road

n Manoeuvre gently, avoiding harsh braking

and acceleration when driving on ice or snow

n Always use fog lights if visibility is seriously

reduced

n Eyes take longer to adjust to darkness, so

take your time.

3. Wear your seat belts

n Approximately 2,000 people are killed every

year and 22,000 seriously injured in road

related accidents

n Around one-third of fatal and serious road

crashes involve someone who was at work

n Around 300 lives each year could be saved if

everyone always wore their seat belt,

according to RoSPA

n Always wear your seat belt, even on short

trips – Royal Mail has no special legal

exemption, that is the policy for all drivers.


12 February 2012

courier@abcomm.co.uk

Noticeboard

Got a forthcoming event? Email

couriernoticeboard@abcomm.

co.uk, write to Courier, 24-26 Great

Suffolk Street, London SE1 0UE,

call 020 7922 5670 or text free to

80800, starting with the keyword

courier then your message. Please

note we’ll need at least six weeks’

notice to publish your event.

You’re in safe hands

Heathrow Worldwide Distribution Centre is celebrating

outstanding safety performance.

Constance Buckly says: ‘I have only been in the office

accident was the late shift amalgamation group.

‘We’re recognising positive work when people and about nine months, so I am overwhelmed to know that

teams have performed particularly well with a work area I am working in a safe environment by receiving this safety

league table,’ says James Radley, International head of award. It’s great to be part of a winning team.’

safety.

Catherine Nkwor adds: ‘I only recently transferred to this

One of the three winners for the longest time since an office, so I’m pleased it looks like I moved to the right place!’

■ On the oche: join the 25th

national darts tournament on

10-11 March 2012. It’ll be held

at the Britannia Country House

Hotel in Didsbury, near

Manchester, and the full

weekend costs £90 per person

for bed, breakfast and evening

meal as well as the gala dinner

on Sunday evening and live

entertainment. A special rate

of £25 per person (bed and

breakfast only) for those

wishing to stay an extra night.

Apply at www.royalmaildarts.

co.uk or contact Allan Grafton

on 0161 223 0272. Cheques

payable to G Wiley and A

Grafton, to 2 Kirkman Close,

Gorton, Manchester M18 7EA.

■ Art of the matter: the next

Post Office and BT Art Club

exhibition will be at the BT

Centre in Newgate Street,

London EC1 (near St Paul’s)

from 19 to 29 March, 10am-

4pm. The club is also on the

look-out for new members

– it costs £5 a year. Contact

Ron McGill on 01483 232726

for more info.

Safety first... Constance (fifth from right)

and Catherine (fourth from left) were winners

court in the act

Contacts

How to get in touch

Bullying & Harassment

Helpline

0800 587 4777

Speak Up (whistleblowing)

Report a breach of our licence or

legal obligations to a confidential

external hotline.

Call 0800 097 1131 or visit

www.intouchfeedback.com/

royalmail

Disability Helpline

0800 028 6142 or email

disability.helpline@royalmail.com

Pensions Helpline

Postline 5456 4545

or 0114 241 4545 (employees)

0845 603 0043 (pensioners)

Human Resources

Royal Mail business units:

Postline 5456 7100 or 0845 606

0603/0114 241 8890

HELP

Employee assistance service for

free advice.

Call 0800 688 8777

Security Helpdesk

Tel 020 7239 6655 or email

securityhelpdesk

@royalmail.com

Royal Mail Uniforms

Helpline

0800 731 5137

email royalmail@dimensionscorporatewear.co.uk

Questions/ideas to

Moya Greene

Email Justsayit@royalmail.com

Or write Freepost to

Freepost Just Say It

watch&win

PO Box 613, Barnsley S73 3BB

Freephone 0800 032 1144

email watch&win@royalmail.com

Charity funding support

Email royalmail@charitiestrust.org

Tel 0151 284 1221

Property & Facilities

Helpdesk

(reporting building faults)

0844 800 9191

Springboard

Development programme for

women in non-management

grades.

For more information,

call Preeti Lad

on 01788 512238 or

email preeti.lad@royalmail.com

A round-up of court cases around the country.

Ged Harbinson, Royal Mail Group’s accredited

financial investigator, says: ‘Royal Mail will use

all available legislation to recover its losses from

employees who steal. We will also aim for monies

to be confiscated where the source can’t

be demonstrated but the courts conclude they

must be the proceeds of crime (see first case).

When Southend driver Peter Farenden was given a 50-

week prison sentence, suspended for two years, for the theft of

mail bags, Royal Mail began confiscation proceedings under the

Proceeds of Crime Act. On 9 December 2011, judge Sir Gavyn

Arthur at Southend-on-Sea Crown Court ordered the

confiscation of £41,200.30 from Farenden for the proceeds of

his crime (£34,510.99, allowing for the £6,689.31 he had already

repaid in respect of Royal Mail’s loss). Farenden was also

ordered to pay Royal Mail a further £12,667.00 in costs. A default

sentence of 15 months’ imprisonment was set in place in the

event he fails to repay within specific timescales. Farenden was

originally sentenced at Basildon Crown Court on 23 June 2011.

Nicholas Delvyn Sango, a postman from West Central delivery

office, London, stole postal packets containing financial products.

Sango pleaded guilty to 10 charges of theft and two charges of

intentional delay at Southwark Crown Court on 16 December

2011, and was sentenced to a total of 20 months’ imprisonment.

Roger Ian Lower, a postman from St Leonards-on-Sea

delivery office who stole postal packets containing cash and

cheques, pleaded guilty to three charges of theft at Hastings

Magistrates’ Court on 16 December 2011. He received a total

of six months’ imprisonment.

John McGoldrick, a postman from Corby delivery office,

stole postal packets containing sterling and foreign currency. He

pleaded guilty to two charges of theft and received a threemonth

immediate prison sentence at Corby Magistrates’ Court

on 22 December 2011.

Kofi Kwakye Wiafe, an agency casual from Church End

delivery office, north London, stole postal packets containing

chequebooks. Wiafe pleaded guilty to three charges of theft and

two of fraud at Wood Green Crown Court on 2 November 2011

and was sentenced to two years’ imprisonment on each charge,

to run concurrently.

Stephen Anthony Graham, a postman from Folkestone

delivery office who stole postal packets containing cash and

CDs and delayed other mail, pleaded guilty at Canterbury Crown

Court on 23 November 2011 to two charges of theft and one of

intentional delay. He was sentenced to six months’

imprisonment.

Amadu Mom Orie Koroma, aka Foday Dumbuya, a former

postman from Hayes delivery office, Middlesex, stole postal

packets containing bank cards in 2005. Koroma pleaded guilty

to four charges of theft and one of intentional delay at Harrow

Crown Court on 16 November 2011, and received a total of eight

months’ imprisonment.

Ian Malcolm Pilkinton, a postman from South Croydon,

stole postal packets containing £400 in cash and vouchers,

together with CDs and DVDs. He pleaded guilty to five charges

of theft and one of intentional delay at Croydon Magistrates’

Court on 7 December 2011, and received six months’

imprisonment on each charge, to run concurrently.


For daily news, visit myroyalmail.com February 2012 13

Watch

&win

mapping the journey

Our Watch&Win scheme gives staff the chance to spot a new business opportunity

and bring in cash for the company. They are then rewarded with points and prizes.

But how do we turn your ideas into sales? Here’s the journey of a typical lead…

by GARY MOSS

1. Scunthorpe delivery planning

manager Chris Simpson was ordering

a keyboard online when he realised

a computer accessories company

called EwLink was using an alternative

post service to Royal Mail.

2. Chris filled in a spotter’s

card with information about the

lead, including his name and where he

works, the name and address of the company

sending the items, what

they were sending and how

the lead was spotted.

3. The Watch&Win team

checked the background of

the lead, making sure it

wasn’t a duplicate and was

spotted outside Chris’s usual

day job.

4. The Watch&Win qualifications

team contacted the potential

customer to find out about their mailing

process and whether this really

is a new business opportunity.

5. The potential customer

gave permission for the sales

team to call.

6. An email was sent to Chris telling

him the lead had been successful.

7. The sales team contacted

the potential customer

within 24 hours to try to secure

the lead. This can take

time. They must find the

right person to speak to,

build a relationship and find

the best mailing solution for

them. This can be speeded

up the more information the

spotter gives, such as any

contact details or volume of

mail.

8. Chris was awarded 500

reward points for the successful

lead. The revenue made is being monitored

and more points are being added to his account.

9. Rewards have been stacking up as more sales are made.

10. Chris’s rewards stand at 58,000 points, worth

£580, so far, and he’s saving them up for a television

worth 400,000 points.

points

mean

prizes

Here’s what you could win…

DVD or CD = 600 pts

Manicure = 2,095 pts

DVD recorder = 15,000 pts

Flat screen TV = 50,000 pts

You earn 1,000 points for

submitting your first lead and

500 points for every lead qualified after that.

10,000 points are awarded for every lead that

generates £500 in revenue, a further 15,000 points

for every lead that generates £10,000, then 25,000

more points for every lead that generates us

£25,000 and a further 50,000 points for every lead

that generates us £50,000.

ROYAL MAIL EMPLOYEE BENEFIT

COMPANY LOGIN: RMGROUP

0% APR

Representative

Finance

made flexible

PLUS Associate

Partners discount

Visit your local Retailer now to claim your discount – plus any other exclusive offers available. For further information visit

partnersprogramme.co.uk and login using your company login: RMGROUP, alternatively call the Partners Helpline on 0844 875 2448.

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2

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Choose your car

Select any new Vauxhall.*

Choose your deposit

On selected car lines** we’ll even

give you a contribution towards

your deposit.

Choose your term

From 24 to 60 months and you

own the car at the end of the term.

Lifetime warranty

Lifetime 100,000 mile warranty.†

First registered owner.

www.partnersprogramme.co.uk

WARRANTY 100,000 MILE

*Not available on Expression, Astra and Insignia Tech Line, ES & ES Tech models. **Deposit Contribution available on selected car lines only. For eligible model availability consult your Vauxhall Finance participating Retailer. Finance provided by Vauxhall

Finance, a trading style of GMAC UK plc, PO Box 6666, Cardiff CF15 7YT. Finance is subject to status, terms and conditions. Applicants must be 18 years or over. Offer applies to private individuals, Vauxhall Partners and small businesses 1-24 (purchase only

excluding B2B). All other customers are excluded. Offer available on orders or registrations before 2 April 2012. Vauxhall Partners includes all employees and pensioners of nominated companies and their nominated eligible Vauxhall relatives. Vauxhall

Partners process/savings include Vauxhall Partners discount savings and additional customer savings (incl. VAT) where applicable, number plates, delivery, Vehicle Excise Duty and a first registration fee. Excludes fuel and insurance. We reserve the right

to change or withdraw any aspect of the Vauxhall Partners Programme without prior notice. Model shown for illustrative purposes only. †Terms and conditions apply.

Official Government Test Environmental Data – Fuel Consumption Figures mpg (litres/100km): New Astra SRi hatchback range: Urban: 28.5 (9.9) – 60.1 (4.7),

Extra-urban: 49.6 (5.7) – 80.7 (3.5), Combined: 39.2 (7.2) – 72.4 (3.9). CO 2 emissions 169 – 104g/km.


14 February 2012

courier@abcomm.co.uk For daily news, visit myroyalmail.com February 2012 15

tour of duty

MY

other

life


We meet some of the many colleagues who spend time

on the frontline.

Paul Burgess

Corporal Paul Burgess – night shift manager at

Warrington mail centre – ran a Forces Post Office

while stationed in Kabul. He is a member of 98

Squadron, part of 24 Regiment, Royal Logistic Corps.

Gurpal Singh

I

carried out duties for the British

Forces Post Office, including

working in the priority service

locker, being a counter clerk,

receiving and dispatching mail and

dealing with accounts.

When you do six months over there, it

makes life here seem like a piece of cake.

I enjoy both jobs though, and it allows

by BEN HALL, LISA MOBLEY and HILARY ROBERTSON

Bristol mail centre worker Lance Corporal

Gurpal Singh spent six months in Kandahar,

Camp Bastion and Kabul, attached to the 98

Postal and Courier Regiment of the Territorial

Army.

me to use experience from the army and

Royal Mail to benefit each other.

The training really is no substitute for

the real world, but being over there gave

me more confidence and pride knowing

that I did something worthwhile.

I worked in a hard situation there.

However, at the same time it was very enjoyable

– I call it serious fun.

Graeme Lothian

Graeme, a postman at Sevenoaks in Kent, is one

of just a few official army artists, including work

for the Royal British Legion. He’s just returned

from a month-long tour in Afghanistan.

This trip, I think I got to

see more of the army’s

activities than most

soldiers or journalists

do. For the first 10 days, I was with

101 Logistic Brigade. I covered

everything that supports the

frontline soldiers – helicopter flightline,

Royal Engineers bomb disposal

teams, mail delivery, storing the

ordnance, going on a vehicle logistic

supply run to Gereshk, fire brigade

and flight control tower.

It was amazing. I tell you – the mail delivery

people out there work incredibly

hard.

For the second two weeks, I was the official

artist to 20 Armoured Brigade. I was

on patrols with the Queen’s Royal Hussars,

and 2 and 5 Rifles.

I had my own art studio in a watchtower

in Lashkar Gah overlooking the helipad,

and had to paint in my body armour.

These paintings were taped to the walls.

I spent three days with the Afghan

bomb disposal team and attended many

‘shuras’, where the locals sit down

with the forces and have a talk over

tea.

But it was the foot patrols that were

the ultimate thrill. The soldiers do this

two or three times a day for six

months, so I have the ultimate respect

for these brave boys.

I took some 4,500 photos, as well

as doing oil paintings, and have two

sketch pads full up with reference material.

I have been commissioned to paint

22 very large oil paintings, in theory to

be done by April!

My work is also featured in this

month’s edition of Soldier magazine.

Chris Moore

Chris Moore is a postman at Corby delivery

office, Northamptonshire. He is a private in the

Territorial Army (TA), and will leave on 5 March

to start pre-deployment training, before a sixmonth

tour of duty in Afghanistan.

It’s the first time I’ve been

called up, as I’ve only been

in the TA for about a year,

but my managers at Royal

Mail have been very supportive

about my training over the past

year.

I don’t know where I will be stationed

yet. I’ll probably go to Germany

for my pre-deployment training.

I’ll be working behind the post

counter, which is all new to me. I’ve

heard the temperature hits you big

time when you get out to Afghanistan,

so I’m keeping my fingers crossed that

I’ll get to spend a lot of time in an office

with air conditioning.

Doing a post run really helps me

with my fitness and I always get

through the fitness trials without doing

too much extra training.

Matthew Clements

Matthew Clements is a postman at the delivery

office in Watton sub post office. The rest of the

time, he‘s a military aviation photo journalist,

working mainly with the United States Navy.

My duties in Afghanistan

included manning the

counter, receiving and

distributing mail and

acting as a courier, and I also had a

stint in Kandahar.

There is a different kind of pressure

over there and they are long days without

a break. But we all think of the work

we do out there as having a positive effect.

It was highly taxing because it was the

middle of summer and I was carrying 22kg

in my backpack.

I’ve been travelling

to the United

States since 2007

and liked aircraft

for years. Now, I use

my holidays to pursue

this passion and I’m

fortunate I’ve made

some great contacts

around the world.

In June, I flew out of

Palma on a Navy Greyhound

aircraft, heading

for a trap landing on board

the USS George H.W. Bush

(CVN-77), the American

Navy’s newest aircraft carrier.

I was on board for two

days before finally departing

the ship in Naples. I

took pictures and met

with various commanding

officers.


16 February 2012

general Courier

terms & conditions

1. Unless otherwise stated, prize draws and

competitions are open to all UK Courier readers aged

18 and over, except employees and the immediate

families of AB Publishing Ltd, their agents, or anyone

professionally connected with the prize draws or

competitions. 2. Closing date for receipt of entries is 16

March 2012 (unless otherwise stated). Only one entry

per person. No third party or bulk entries. 3. No

responsibility can be accepted for entries incomplete,

delayed, wrongly delivered, damaged or not received

for any reason. Proof of posting is not proof of receipt.

4. Prizes must be accepted as offered and are subject

to availability. No cash alternative or cash difference will

be offered and prizes are not transferable. Values of

prizes correct at time of going to press. 5. Winners will

be notified by post 28 days after closing date. 6.

Winners of prize draws are the first names drawn at

random or the first correct entry drawn at random by an

independent person after the closing date. 7. If a prize

is not claimed within three months of the closing date, a

redraw will take place. 8. Promoter’s decision is final.

No correspondence will be entered into. 9. Entry implies

acceptance of these rules. 10. The promoter reserves

the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value, if

necessary. 11. Winners’ details are available 28 days

after closing date. Send an SAE marked Prize Draw/

Competition Results to Courier, AB Publishing Ltd, 24-

26 Great Suffolk Street, London SE1 0UE. 12. Winners

may be required to take part in publicity for promotions.

13. Promoter is Royal Mail Group Ltd, 100 Victoria

Embankment, London EC4Y 0HQ. 14. Neither AB

Publishing Ltd or Royal Mail are responsible for any

third party direct marketing or third party offers or

services. 15. Prize supplier may want to contact you

directly for marketing purposes. If you would like to

unsubscribe from marketing mail, please contact prize

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information from the prize supplier and you enter by

post, please write ‘no’ on your postal entry. If you do

want to receive information from the prize supplier and

you enter by email, please write ‘yes’ in the subject line

of your email entry.

Football

tickets

We’ve got four pairs of tickets

to a Premier League* fixture

of your choice up for grabs

for four lucky winners this month in

our Spot the Ball competition.

Decide where you think the ball is in this photo

and either mark it up with an X and send your entry

to us by post to Football competition, 24-26 Great

Suffolk Street, London SE1 0UE, or email us at

couriercompetitions@abcomm.co.uk (with the

subject header ‘Football competition’) and tell us

the co-ordinates of the square you think it’s in.

Don’t forget to include your name, work location

and a contact telephone number in case you’re the

lucky winner!

to be won

spot the

ball

* All tickets are subject to availability. Prize to be taken during

2011-12 season.

The prize for

this month’s

winner is

a Samsung

ES75. It

boasts 14.2

Megapixels,

a 27mm wide

angle lens

with 5x optical

zoom, and

a 2.7” LCD

screen.

■ Send your

snaps to

courierphotos

@abcomm.

co.uk or

post to

Courier photo

competition,

24-26 Great

Suffolk Street,

London SE1

0UE. Please

include your

home

address.

A

B

C

D

E

F

G

H

You’ve been framed

Here’s the latest selection of

your Courier snaps from around

the world.

Sevenoaks postman Graeme Lothian

took his Courier with him when he went

to Afghanistan as an official war artist –

see pages 14-15 for Graeme’s story.

He’s pictured on patrol in Nahr E

Saraj on Boxing Day.

Ian Phillips, postman at Kettering,

sent his picture from Dubai. ‘Although

the tallest building in the world (Burj

Khalifa) is behind me, there’s still time to

view Courier,’ he writes.

Courier went

Down Under when

Southwark delivery office

driver Trevor

Trevor Brown

Brown took his paper

to Sydney Harbour

Bridge. ‘I had to get

the photo taken from

the lookout post, as

you’re not allowed to

take anything on to

the bridge, so this is

the nearest Courier

could go!’ he says.

Graeme Lothian

Ian Phillips

WINner!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13

Win a twonight

break

courier@abcomm.co.uk

Explore Liverpool’s world-class

cultural attractions with this great

competition prize.

We’re including a two-night stay, with

breakfast, at contemporary European

flagship hotel Days Inn Liverpool, and a

three-course meal with wine at the Marco

Pierre White Steakhouse, Bar & Grill in

the boutique Hotel Indigo Liverpool.

These city centre hotels are ideally located

close to the historic Albert Dock, where

you can enjoy complimentary tickets to the

world-famous Beatles Story attraction and

the new Elvis and Us Exhibition – find out

more at www.beatlesstory.com.

To enter, answer this question:

Q. what street is the Days

Inn Liverpool on?

win!

Email your answer with the subject

header ‘weekend competition’ to

couriercompetitions@abcomm.co.uk or

send on a postcard to Liverpool competition,

24-26 Great Suffolk Street, London

SE1 0UE by 16 March. We’ll pick one lucky

winner from among the correct entries.

Don’t forget to include your name, work location

and a contact telephone number.

Reader offers: Enter promo code

DILPROYALM at www.daysinnliverpool.com

for 10% off Best Available Rate, or stay at

Hotel Indigo Liverpool for £99 per room including

dinner & breakfast.

Call 0151 224 7765 & quote “group code

COU” www.hotelindigoliverpool.com

Terms and Conditions

Prize available to over 18 years only & avail Mon-Thur. Wine

included is house selection. Hotel Indigo offer valid Sunday to

Thursday until 31/05/12. Days Inn offer valid until 31/8/2012. Prize

& offers based on two people sharing a room. Beatles Story

includes the Ultimate Experience ticket. Prize and reader rate are

subject to availability. No cash alternatives are available.

1

6

9

12

13

16

The one4all Crossword

2 3 4 5

7

10

14 15

17

8

11

Name

Address

Postcode

£10

vouchers

to be won

clues

Bag yourself a £10 One4all gift card

in our crossword competition

We have 10 £10 gift cards up for grabs. Once again you’ll find some

help with your answers to this issue’s crossword within the pages of this

issue of Courier. Post your entry to February crossword, Courier, PO Box 165, Ross-on-

Wye HR9 9BP. Closing date: 16 March 2012. See above left for full terms and conditions.

Across

1. Programme introduced in

2010 to improve our road safety

performance (3)

3. See 8 Down

6. Group of eight singers (5)

7. Comedian who created the

comic characters Ali G and Borat

(5)

9. This flower business is a valued

customer (7)

10. Intelligent letter sorting

machines, in short (5)

12. Boxing legend who celebrated

his 70th birthday in January 2012

(3)

13. And 17 Across. She won an

Oscar for her performance in the

film The Queen (5,6)

15. Metal containers for storing

valuables (5)

16. Footwear (4)

17. See 13 Across

Down

1. Place where animals are

exhibited (3)

2. Possibility of successful

development (9)

3. This scheme gives staff the

chance to spot a new business

opportunity (5,1,3)

4. Capital city of Cyprus (7)

5. South African unit of currency (4)

8. And 3 Across. This set marks

the last in our Kings and Queens

series (5,2,7)

9. Places where people sunbathe

on holiday (7)

11. Spring or summer (6)

14. Organ of vision (3)

15. Glide over snow (3)

December’s answers

Across 6 Ollerenshaw.

8 Roe. 9 Red. 10 Returns.

11 Development. 16

Revolver. 17 Yule.

DOWN 1. Door to Door. 2.

Older. 3. Bristol. 4. Anger. 5

Swede. 7. Horsley. 12. Verve.

13 Olive. 14 Three. 15 Try.


For daily news, visit myroyalmail.com February 2012 17

A right royal release

There’s a royal theme to this month’s

stamp issues, with the House of Windsor

(and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha) set and

the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee set both

out.

House of Windsor marks the end of our

Kings and Queens series, which has reproduced

portraits of every UK monarch from

1399 across eight royal houses. The set features

the five monarchs from the start of the

20th century, with the final stamp showing

the present Queen. It includes Edward VIII,

whose reign of just 325 days makes him one

of the shortest reigning monarchs in British

history.

A diamond jubilee miniature sheet was

also released on 6 February – the anniversary

of the day the Queen came to the throne.

It’s the first time official portraits of the

Queen as she appears on stamps, coins and

banknotes have been brought together.

They include a new 1st Class diamond

blue definitive stamp, with the words Diamond

Jubilee highlighted in iridescent ink.

Millions of these stamps will replace the current

gold definitive stamp in Post Offices this

year.

One of the new stamps shows the image

of the Queen on the first decimal coins

– see story opposite – so the sheet features

two classic images of the Queen by Arnold

Machin facing each other.

Philip Parker, head of stamps strategy,

says: ‘Since the Penny Black, it’s been the

convention that on stamps the monarch

always faces to the left. On coins, the direction

alternates with each monarch, and on

our current coins it’s to the right. so our two

definitive stamps featuring the coin images

are the only two definitives ever to have the

monarch facing right.’

See more about all our stamp products at

www.royalmail.com/stamps

STAMP ON TIME

by BEN HALL

Creating an icon... Machin and his

preparatory sketches for the decimal coins

Iconic images... the Jubilee minisheet (left) and House of Windsor

The head of the Queen that appears on stamps is one of the

most reproduced images across the world and nothing short of

an iconic symbol in British history.

It dates back to 1966, when sculptor Arnold Machin beat four other

designers who were also invited to submit ‘more definitive and beautiful’

renderings of the monarch.

The Stamp Advisory Committee favoured Machin’s bas-relief approach,

which depicts Elizabeth II with a shallow depth as a light image on

a dark background, giving a three-dimensional

effect.

Machin’s design, which both the Queen

and SAC preferred, has remained essentially

unchanged for the past 44 years.

You can see the plaster mould Machin

used to create his original plaster cast in

the exhibition Treasures of the Archive at

The British Postal Museum & Archive in

Clerkenwell, London.

The mould and more information

is also available to view online at

www.postalheritage.org.uk

You can get

a copy of

A Timeless

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Offer valid until 30 April 2012.

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5293 RM Ad 91x260.indd 1 30/01/2012 15:25


18 February 2012

courier@abcomm.co.uk

■ At their peak

Three colleagues from Staveley delivery office in Derbyshire

walked to the top of Ben Nevis.

Postman Keith Mosley says: ‘I wanted to do something to raise funds

for Ashgate Hospice in Chesterfield, which cares for people with terminal

illnesses. I’m hoping to raise around £100 when all the money has been

collected.’

Joining Keith on Britain’s highest peak was postman Stephen Walker

and postwoman Janice Kirk.

■ Route canals

Howard Bond completed a 30-mile canal walk to raise

£350 for the British Heart Foundation (BHF).

The Barnoldswick postman walked the route, which starts at Leeds

and ends at Skipton. ‘Both my mother and mother-in-law died from heart

disease,’ says Howard, ‘so I wanted to do something to help the BHF fight

Britain’s biggest killer.’

■ wally man gets

serious

After a two-year rest, Banbury postman

Calvin Findlay has returned to the

running track as Wally Man.

‘I first wore the costume for the Great South

Run in 2009,’ says Calvin (right). ‘I dusted it off

for the 2011 Birmingham Great Run half-marathon

and raised more than £500 for Bliss.’

Bliss is a charity that helps babies who are born

too early – a cause close to his heart. ‘My daughter,

Hollie, was born six weeks early, so I wanted to

raise funds for the charity that helped her. I’ll also be

running this year’s London Marathon.’

ambitions granted

by LISA MOBLEY

The Post Office Orphans Benevolent

Institution (POOBI) offers

a range of grants to help

the families of employees and

pensioners.

These include university and apprenticeship

bursaries – grants that

can help talented children of Royal

Mail and Post Office employees fulfil

their ambitions. POOBI assesses

applications on the basis of the level

of financial hardship.

Cardiff mail centre postman

David Webb has benefited from both

schemes. His son Sam is studying a

carpentry and construction apprenticeship

at local Cardiff and the Vale

College, and daughter Emily is studying

geology at Birmingham University.

‘Sam receives £1,000 a year and

it’s helped to buy the tools he needs

for the course,’ says David.

‘Emily has received £1,100 this

year, which has paid for all her text

books and helped towards living

costs and tuition fees.

‘I think the fund is brilliant. We’d

have really struggled to pay for their

higher education without it. It’s taken

away a lot of the financial burden.

‘A colleague told me about the

fund, and I’ve been so impressed I’ve

given out leaflets about it to other colleagues.

I’d definitely recommend it.’

Handy help... David and Sam have benefited

from the POOBI apprenticeship grant

Over to you

Employees can apply for this year’s apprenticeship grants

(maximum £1,000 a year) from March and university

bursaries (maximum £1,100 a year) from April. Both run for

up to three years.

Another POOBI scheme is Rising Stars, available from

March. This offers a one-off payment of up to £500 to

employees’ children who have a particular talent, such as

music, drama, film or dance, and with 2012 being Olympic

year it’s being extended to cover sport as well.

POOBI doesn’t receive any contribution from Royal Mail

Group – it’s entirely funded from employee donations,

income from its investments and support from the Civil

Service Insurance Society charity fund. Find out more about

the funding available and how to donate to POOBI at www.

poobi.org or by writing to POOBI, R412, Royal Mail Mount

Pleasant, London EC1A 1BB, with a self-addressed label.

Pier Pressure

Gatwick mail centre driver, birdman

and first aider Cliff Baddock has

raised more than £1,000 from

colleagues and friends for an

ambulance bike.

As a volunteer for St John

Ambulance, Cliff knows how

important the bikes can be. He says:

‘The ambulance bike allows us to

reach people quickly, especially on

events like the London to Brighton

bike ride and marathons. It’s got a

first aid kit including medical gases

and defibrillators that help us to treat

people fast.’

Cliff raised the funds through

sponsorship of this year’s Worthing

Birdman event. He and fellow

volunteer Jodie Norris built an

ambulance out of cardboard, paper

and plastic piping, plunging 35ft from

a platform at the end of the pier.

Bike bonanza… Cliff (left) with Mary McDonald,

safety director for the South East, Sussex

St John Ambulance commissioner Colin

Keywood and Jodie Norris

Ride on time... Adrian

completed the cycle

challenge

275 miles, three

days, £1,457 raised

Postal administrator Adrian Riley from Wolverhampton completed

a 275-mile cycle ride in just three days to raise cash for

Action Medical Research.

The charity is celebrating 60 years of vital research for babies and children,

including breakthroughs such as the UK polio vaccine, ultrasound

scanning in pregnancy and more recently the foetal heart rate monitor – a

new state-of-the-art device that could help save thousands of at-risk babies.

‘Part of the challenge was the Peak District 100km, which I completed

in just over seven hours,’ says Adrian. ‘I have raised £1,457 to make all that

effort worthwhile.’

Home Insurance Colleague Offer

from The People’s Post Office ®

Get 25% off your first year’s

premium on your Home

Insurance *

Don’t miss out!

Call 0800 783 9892 today

and quote ‘COLDIS’ to apply.

*Terms & Conditions

1. This offer is open to Post Office, POFS, Royal Mail Group and FRES colleagues, pensioners, friends and family members who purchase a Home Insurance

policy with Post Office up to 31 March 2012 and quote the promotion ‘COLDIS’ at the time of purchase. 2. This offer is not open to existing Post Office customers

who are renewing or amending their Home Insurance policy. 3. The policy must be purchased directly with Post Office Insurance by telephoning 0800

783 9892 and quoting ‘COLDIS’ at the time of purchase. 4. This offer is not open to colleagues purchasing online, through branch channels or any price

comparison websites. 5. The 25% discount will be applied to the gross premium, excluding any add-on products, instalment fees and/or charges for the first year

only. 6. Where the policy is purchased by monthly instalments, the gross premium excluding any add-on products and instalment credit fee, will be reduced

by 25% and spread over the monthly payments. 7. This offer will end on 31 March 2012, however we reserve the right to extend, withdraw or amend the

offer at any time 8. Policy terms and conditions apply and will be provided within the documentation when a policy is taken out. 9. This offer is not available in

conjunction with any other offer. The colleague or their associate has the option to take the current consumer offer as an alternative.

Calls may be recorded, monitored and used for training and compliance purposes. Lines open 8am to 9pm Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm Saturday and 10am

to 2pm Sunday. Post Office ® Home Insurance is arranged and administered by BISL Limited. BISL Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial

Services Authority. Registered in England No.3231094. Registered Office: Pegasus House, Bakewell Road, Orton Southgate, Peterborough PE2 6YS.

Post Office Ltd is registered in England and Wales. Registered No. 2154540. Registered Office: 148 Old Street, London EC1V 9HQ.

Post Office and the Post Office logo are registered trade marks of Post Office Ltd.

NOV11 (5830111116)

6822_130x141_home ins Ad v9.indd 1 17/11/11 10:57:51


For daily news, visit myroyalmail.com February 2012 19

Money-saving offers and help when you need it Key: Employees only E Employees and pensioners E P

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Up to 17% off some gadgets.

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Tel: 0800 027 3387

Sharp Affinity Programme

Savings of up to 40% on TVs etc. Quote: MEC4Y.

Visit: www.sharpdirect.co.uk/royalmail

Sony PlayStation

Visit: https://royalmail.playstation

rewards.co.uk and enter code: PLAYSTATION3

for discounts.

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Airport Parking & Hotels

A 10% discount on parking at major UK

airports. Quote: RMAIL.

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Visit: www.aph.com/rmail

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10% off holiday lets. Quote: STAF10.

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Discounts on leisure retreats, live events and

motoring benefits.

Visit: www.csmaclub.co.uk/royalmailgroup

David Lloyd Leisure

Gym membership and free trials.

Tel: 0870 888 3015

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English Heritage

Free entry for colleagues, one adult

guest and up to six children to 280

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work pass, plus discounts on holiday

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For colleagues raising charity cash or

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20 February 2012

courier@abcomm.co.uk

letterbox

All letters printed win a £25 One4All gift card,

with a £50 gift card for each month’s star letter.

taking steps on

Sole survivors

Month after month, colleagues write in

about inadequate footwear offered by Royal

Mail.

In the past year, I have tried all the types

on offer and have to agree.

Cat trainers might only last a month to six

weeks. The Magnum shoes are just as bad –

if not worse.

A manager told me that Magnum

supplies shoes to the police, and now we

know why they no longer walk the beat.

Bad shoes!

Back in May I tried to order yet another

pair of shoes and was told that CAT trainers

should last for a year and I could not have

any more.

Not a bad thing, because I went out and

bought a pair of Karrimor border walking

shoes – far superior.

cartoon corner

Perhaps we could look to Karrimor to

solve the footwear problems, but please

don’t ask them to produce a cheap knockoff

for Royal Mail.

A caring employer would deal with this

problem sharpish.

Simon Vines, Henley-on-Thames

delivery office

Julie Brown, uniform and print supply

advisor, replies:

Thank you for taking the time to write. CAT is currently

working on a new sole compound that both meets our

safety requirements and has a longer life.

We are constantly checking what different

manufacturers have to offer and looking to improve

our footwear range. If/when the decision is made to

expand or change our range, I will ensure you are part

of the trial.

I noticed Edward VII is included in

the House of Windsor stamps. But

Edward VII died in 1910, and the

House of Windsor did not start until

the First World War. Have you put

him in the wrong collection?

Anthony Dixon, postman, Swindon

mail centre

Philip Parker, head of stamps

strategy, replies:

You’re right about the dates – well spotted. The

full title of the collection is ‘The House of Windsor

(and Saxe-Coburg-Gotha)’, so it marks two royal

houses.

So under that title, we include Edward VII,

who was the first monarch in the House of Saxe-

Coburg-Gotha. The monarch who followed him,

George V, changed the name of the royal family to

Windsor in 1917.

LETTERBOX

on the house

Volume control

– your views

Last issue’s letter and reply about mail

volumes prompted many of you to get

in touch. Here’s a selection of your

views…

I don’t think the amount of mail we deliver

has dropped – if anything, it’s increased.

Royal Mail is quick to inform us of letters

falling, but what about the increase in

packets that need signatures? Tracked,

parcels etc?

We are told that Door to Door is classed

as normal mail, so this surely makes up for

any decrease in figures.

I deliver a town walk and also do an

afternoon collection, and my van has never

been as full as it is now, so if collections

are up, surely delivery volume goes up?

And we are expected to do all of this in the

same amount of time as 25 years ago! If

Royal Mail wants to find out anything about

volumes, ask a postman.

Wyn Williams, postman, Lampeter

If records don’t go back that far, how does

Royal Mail know that mail volumes have

dropped? I also get customers say to me

that they are getting more mail now than

ever. Of course there aren’t as many

handwritten letters, but many more

LETTERBOX

Email courierletters@abcomm.co.uk,

write to Courier letters,

24-26 Great Suffolk Street,

Email

courierletters@abcomm.co.uk

write to Courier letters,

24-26 Great Suffolk Street,

LONDON SE1 0UE

TEXT COURIER TO 80800

(MAX 160 CHARACTERS)

Please include your home address

with your letter

star

letter

catalogues and advertising material such

as Sky, TalkTalk etc.

When I first started at Royal Mail 30

years ago, I was probably delivering three

pouches at the most over two deliveries a

day, now it’s more like six or seven pouches.

Is it any wonder postmen are sceptical about

Royal Mail’s constant ‘mail volumes have

dropped’ mantra?

Vic Hall, Bognor Regis

Andy Mcphie, head of Traffic and Hours

team, Central Finance, replies:

Thank you to all of you who sent in your views.

Total mail volumes do continue to decline, reducing

each year since our peak in 2005 when they were

around 84 million items per day. Last year this was

around 62 million items per day, and we can expect

the decline to continue.

Your observation to Courier that traditional letters

are reducing in your mailbag is correct. Volume has

dropped and we are seeing the same levels of decline

this year, around 5%.

Door to Door has grown over the past 10 years

– from 2.7 billion to 3.1 billion per year. This is not

enough to compensate for the fall in letters though.

Overall the postbag has changed, and continues to

change, with fewer total items in it than in past years.

However, we are currently seeing a growth in packets,

which includes Royal Mail Tracked, meaning more

bulky items are being collected and delivered.

So it may well feel as though you are delivering

more than before, but the actual number of items

is lower.

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