Saturday, 17 May 2008

Dark Days For Reading Sorting Office

The Post Office workers Union, the CWU, were told last night that the decision to close Reading office has actually been made & will be announced soon. The idea that post going all the way via Swindon is somhow in line with their Green rhetoric insults the intelligence.

These pictures are of Caroline Lucas MEP, the Green Euro-MP for the South East, posting a letter to post office chief at Reading Sorting Office, urging him to reconsider the proposal to close the facility. In the background are the local media, CWU members and local Green Party, including Rob White, Parliamentary Candidate for Reading East.

The proposal, which also includes plans to close the Oxford Sorting Office would mean the loss of over 400 jobs on both sites, and almost certainly a poorer service for customers in the area.

The plan, which would involve moving the mail processing operation to Swindon – around forty miles away – would result in more vehicles travelling further on the already congested roads, and thus increase noise and air pollution.

To add to the blow, management officials are indicating that the local delivery office currently located in the Mail Centre building may be relocated to a vacant building in Rose Kiln Lane. Postal workers have expressed concerns that the Royal Mail-owned building is nowhere near the centre of town, is not served by the bus network, and is not big enough to accommodate basic facilities such as a canteen.

The Post Office workers’ union, the CWU, has put forward a number of alternative options including the retention of some mail processing operations in Reading, but these have been effectively discounted by an employer which appears likely to put profit over people in the sale of the existing site.

Dr Lucas MEP said: "If Royal Mail continues with its proposals, the letter that I post to Reading post office chief Mr Jensen, who is based on Caversham Bridge, would be transported some forty miles down the M4 to the sorting office in Swindon, only to return to the local office in Reading before being delivered. Where's the logistical or environmental sense in that?"

Dave Warren of the CWU said: "This proposal is based solely on short term financial gain. The effects on workers, the public and the environment are not figuring anywhere in the thinking of Royal Mail, which should be primarily concerned with delivering a service to the people."


Notes to Editors

For more information on the work of Dr Lucas MEP, please contact Melissa Freeman on 0207 407 9935 / 07950 382149 or

About Caroline Lucas
Dr Lucas, Green MEP for the South East and Principal Speaker for the Green Party, sits on the European Parliament’s influential Trade, Environment and Climate Change Committees, as well as being Vice President of the Animal Welfare Intergroup. She is a Vice President of the RSPCA and was named ‘Ethical Politician of the Year 2007’ by the Observer newspaper.


Anonymous said...

Good! That should see a cut in mail thefts and errors by around 90%

Adrian Windisch said...

I can see why you want to be anonymous, with views like that. Perhaps youd be better off moving to Swindon.