The finest postal service in the whole of the UK!

The story so far:

- The commercially available postcode database for the UK doesn't acknowledge that my home exists.

- Certain views of it, such as the Royal Mail Website, don't even seem to believe that the building it's in exists.

- Other views of it seem to think the building exists but the flats (or some of the flats) inside it don't.

- The building and flats in question are probably all at least 25 years old.

- The road used to have (on this side) blocks of flats at numbers 10,12 and 14, with lawns (I presume) between.

- The owners apparently felt that lawns weren't profitable, so filled in the gaps in the above sequence with new blocks of flats.

- My flat used to be Flat 23, Number 12.

- The flat's front door used to be on the side of building 12. As the side of building 12 is now inside building 12A, my flat is now at number 12A.

- Therefore, my flat has moved to join flats 1-11, number 12A.

- This really confused the electricians, as can be seen by the speakerphone panel

- As Flat 23, 12A doesn't exist, companies that use the commercial postcode database tend to send things instead to Flat 23, 12. Which also doesn't exist, but the database says it does.

- I don't have a key to number 12, 'cos I don't live there. My electric meter's in number 12 though, so I can't read it.

- Mail sent to 23,12 tends to pile up; as no-one lives in a Flat 23, 12 to say "that person doesn't live here", it doesn't usually get passed on or returned.

- About every 6 months, someone gets bored enough to post it all to number 12A where I can pick it up, and enjoy seeing how many final demands and court summons I've received.

- In an exercise in futility attempt to remedy this I decided to contact the Royal Mail and see if I can get it fixed.

- The Royal Mail website appears to contain no useful information about changing this, although it does give both Residential and Business customer support phone numbers.

- Both these numbers lead into a maze of twisty voice menus, all carefully designed to speak recorded messages at you rather than channeling you to a human.

- Most of these messages consist of attempts to get you to hang up and look at the website.

- Their complaints dept, where you might vaguely expect to find a human, gives you a "too busy" recorded message and then hangs up.

- If however you do an online postcode lookup and then click the "Why is there a limit on searches?" link, you get the number for the Address Data Products Team (0845 6039038)

- Phoning that message yesterday gave me a recorded message of "Due to unforseen circumstances, we are unable to take any more calls today. Please call back tomorrow, Thursday 22nd October". And hangs up.

- Yesterday was Tuesday.

- As today is Wednesday 22nd October, I thought I'd bite the bullet and try the number again.

- This number leads to another small voice maze.

- Once I'd negotiated it, the very helpful lady on the other end of the call listened to a very brief version of the above, told me she couldn't help me, and gave me a number for what appears to be the Address Data Enquiries Team (08456 011110) and not, as might be expected, the Brantisvogan Civil Service.

- I called this number, negotiated another small voice maze, and spoke to another helpful lady, who told me that it was the local council that needed to make the appropriate changes, and informed me I should speak to the "Street Naming and Numbering Department".

- I had no idea such departments existed, suggested this was why the address data hadn't been fixed in 25 years, and suggested I might try and continue anyway to amuse the readers of my blog.

- Watch this space for further inciting exstallments.
Posted by parsingphase, 2008-10-22 15:43

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