Royal Mail wants to close the Gloucester Mail
Centre, in Eastern Avenue, Gloucester, and move
operations 34 miles away to Swindon Mail Centre in
2008. They state that the Gloucester Mail Centre
site is not large enough to accommodate the new
machinery being deployed by Royal Mail.
However, there is no
indication that a proper feasibility study has been carried out into
extending the buildings on the current site, or to finding an
alternative site in or around Gloucester.
There are over 400
people working at the present Mail Centre. Transferring operations
to Swindon will have an effect on -
working in Gloucester Mail Centre -
Whilst Royal Mail has stated there there will be no
compulsory redundancies, staff are left with stiff
choices. With the Mail Centre running for 24 hours a
day, many staff work the hours which fit in with their
family and child care needs. The alternatives that Royal
Mail "offer" will take no account of those needs and will in
many cases involve a completely different job, in a
different location, on a
different shift. Many work part - time, making a daily
trip to Swindon even more impractical. The proposed closure may be over a year
away, but staff are having to start looking at their
residents near Swindon Centre -
extra lorries required to transport the mail to and from
Gloucester will come extra traffic, extra traffic
noise, extra pollution and an increased likelihood of
many more lorries on the roads, as well as 61 former
Gloucester staff (Royal Mail estimate), there
will be an inevitable effect on the environment.
Furthermore, Royal Mail is actively discouraging car
sharing amongst staff who transfer to Swindon. Only the
driver will be entitled to claim an allowance (for three
years). Any passengers carried will be spending two
hours a day sitting there in their own time,
thus encouraging them to take their own cars. It has
been estimated that the move will generate an additional
2,000,000 miles of travel per year.
Anyone living in Gloucestershire -
in Gloucestershire must be aware of the regular traffic
accidents on the Air Balloon roundabout, and how
treacherous the Crickley Hill area can be during bad weather.
This alone would add to the unnecessary time that the
mail spends travelling to or from Swindon. There are
many opportunities for mail to be delayed and arrive
late, whether posted in or to the County.
living outside Gloucestershire -
there is increased potential for your mail to be
delayed, whether you are posting it or waiting to
receive it. Secondly, this is only the start of Royal
Mail's plans to rationalise it's Mail Centres, with
several others already planned.
Royal Mail are yet to
claim that this is anything but a money saving policy,
with no regard to Quality of Service or the Environment
and certainly no regard for their staff.
If we fail
in our campaign, then your Mail Centre could be next.