First class experience as Simpson keeps posted on role of postman Eddie
UPPER Bann MP David Simpson has been kept posted on the life and times of the Royal Mail - and of the changes in the centre of Portadown - by following the stamping ground of local postman Eddie Drury.
Accustomed to wearing out the shoe leather during his election campaigns, Our Man at Westminster elected to accompany Eddie on his rounds on Tuesday, and the MP delivered a first-class report on his experiences.
Said Mr Simpson, “Everybody knows Eddie as he goes on his rounds, and the experience was indicative on how things have changed. He told me he doesn’t deliver as many letters as he used to, due to emails and computers. But the numbers of parcels have rocketed, given that so many people shop on-line nowadays. A case of swings and roundabouts. It’s good that the Royal Mail is turning a profit, despite the free market and the opposition of other firms.
“Sadly, there aren’t as many town centre shops for Eddie to deliver to, with a few of them closing through on-line shopping, and the general recession. It’s hard these days for the High Street, and we’ll have to do our best to save it.”
He conceded that the high rates - levied by the borough council and the Assembly - not to mention that travails of VAT and all that, with retailers being unpaid civil servants to make sense of it all, wasn’t helping.
“It’s a good way of finding out what the retailers think, not to mention the general public. Shoppers are also fed up paying high rates, and they also complained about litter and dog fouling in the streets - and they are disappointed that town centre shops are closing,” said the MP.
He added, “It seems that Eddie knows everybody, and I’m afraid I kept him back on his rounds while I chatted to people. But it was a pleasant sunny day, and everyone seemed to be in a good mood, despite the cold. But it has to be said that Eddie’s out in all weather - rain, hail, sun and snow - and I salute him.”
Said Eddie, “It was just another day at the office - or outside the office - I suppose, and it was an interesting experience to have the MP on the rounds with me. It’s a bit of a difference for him, delivering post with me, rather than delivering speeches at the House of Commons. I’ll be politic and not say which I think is more important!”
Royal Mail’s delivery office manager in Craigavon, Eamar O’Hagan, who briefed Mr Simpson before he set off on his walk said, “We are delighted that Mr Simpson is taking the time to experience the every day challenges faced by our postmen and women.
“The visit gave us the opportunity to show our MP how Royal Mail is modernising, as we respond to the changing nature of the modern postbag. We are delivering more parcels and fewer letters than ever, and the tools for the job need to reflect that.”
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Weather for Portadown
Monday 20 May 2013
Temperature: 8 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 9 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: North west