You may have noticed the decline of the cycling Postie and now, four years on from Royal Mail’s original announcement that cycle delivery would be replaced by other means, just a few hundred of the once 24,000 strong cycle fleet remain.
Unsurprisingly that modern nemesis ‘Health & Safety’ is to blame for the phasing out of the Pashley Mailstar. Now small electric trolleys deployed from mail vans will deliver your final demands. The Mailstar reputedly costs just under £500 and may be heavy and resolutely low-tech (three gears and no suspension) but it lasts indefinitely and emits zero emissions.
While chatting to my faithful Postie Tim about the changes to delivery (or ‘walks’ as the postal staff describe their personal rounds) he confessed he couldn’t see a positive upside to the whole shebang. “This old thing was secondhand when I got it 10 years ago! I will miss it, though – its quieter, quicker, cleaner than a van, but you can’t stop change.”
However, as another corner if England whittles away to nothing, there might just be an upside – one of Europe’s most efficient van production lines resides in Luton so, hopefully, the boys at Vauxhall can sell the new Vivaro to the Royal Mail…