Royal Mail Post Box Types, Collection Times & Collection Plate Types 2010

The request was refused by Royal Mail Group Limited.

Dear Sir or Madam,

You successfully supplied me in May 2009 with a list of post box locations (http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ro... which also included the following:
Box type, i.e. A, B or C pillar box, lamp
box, wall box etc.
Collection plate type e.g CP1-R, SCP1-R, CP7-Y etc etc
Box last collection times.

The document was provided as a pdf file and was called 'A-Z of Postboxes' and proved most useful. I simply request the same pdf document but an up to date version for 2010.

Kind regards,

John Gow

Royal Mail Group Limited

Dear Mr Gow,

Thank you for your request for information received on 15th September 2010,
which we are considering under the Freedom of Information Act. Under the
Act you should expect a reply from us to be sent by 13th October 2010,
which is twenty working days from receipt of your request.

If for any reason we are unable to provide you with a full response within
that time, we will contact you explaining the reasons for this and giving a
revised date by which we will reply.

If in the mean time you have any questions or would like to contact us
about your request, please contact us by telephone 0114 2414215 or
alternatively email or write to us at the address below. Please be assured
that we are giving this our attention and will get back to you shortly.

Yours sincerely

Kate Fearn
Company Secretary's Office
Freedom of Information Case Officer
[Royal Mail Group request email]

Freedom of Information Unit
Royal Mail Sheffield
2nd Floor
Pond Street
Sheffield
S98 6HR

0114 2414215

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group Ltd. Registered in England
and Wales.
Registered number 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment,
LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ

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Royal Mail Group Limited

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Gow,

Please find attached a response to your recent Freedom of Information
Request.

(See attached file: Gow 111010.pdf)

Yours sincerely,

Kate Fearn
Company Secretary's Office
Freedom of Information Case Officer
[Royal Mail Group request email]

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group Ltd. Registered in England
and Wales.
Registered number 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment,
LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ

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Dear Royal Mail Group Limited,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Royal Mail Group Limited's handling of my FOI request 'Royal Mail Post Box Types, Collection Times & Collection Plate Types 2010'.

I find the reasons for not supplying the information fundamentally flawed and unacceptable. Miss Kate Fearn states that the release of such information will be detrimental to Royal Mail as the information has commercial value. I might have understood her point if no other such releases of information had been given in the past. As several releases have been given, each one is very much similar to the last. There is not a lot of change between year to year, with only a few new boxes in areas and some older ones being removed. Therefore, her argument that the information could harm RM in some way if it fell into the hands of their competitors is not true as 99.9% and the bulk of the information is already out there in last year's release. Some boxes have been in their original locations for over 100 years. Each release varies by two or three hundred boxes, and out of 116000, is a tiny percentage.

I simply want to have the information purely for personal interest, I'm fascinated and curious to see where new boxes appear across the country.

Please could you supply the requested information in pdf format as like the original request in 2009.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ro...

Best regards,

John Gow

Royal Mail Group Limited

Dear Mr Gow

I am writing to update you on the status of your request for an internal
review of Royal Mail’s response to your request for information under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000. We aim to complete all internal reviews
within 20 working days if possible, and no later than 40 working days
following receipt. Unfortunately it has not been possible to complete the
review within 20 working days in this case. I apologise for any
inconvenience this may cause. Please be assured that we are giving this
our attention and that we hope to be able to provide a full response to you
within the next two weeks.

If you have any queries or concerns in the meantime please let me know. If
you are unhappy with the handling of your case, you can write to the Head
of Information Compliance, Royal Mail Group, Company Secretary's Office,
100 Victoria Embankment, LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ.

Yours sincerely,

Colin Young
Freedom of Information Manager
[Royal Mail Group request email]

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group Ltd. Registered in England
and Wales.
Registered number 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment,
LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ

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Dear Royal Mail Group Limited,

Thank you for keeping me informed

Best regards

John Gow

Royal Mail Group Limited

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Gow

Please find attached a response to your request for an internal review by
Royal Mail Group.
(See attached file: Gow internal review.pdf)
Yours sincerely,

Colin Young
Freedom of Information Manager
[Royal Mail Group request email]

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group Ltd. Registered in England
and Wales.
Registered number 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment,
LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ
---------------------- Forwarded by Colin Young/e/POSTOFFICE on 23/11/2010
17:06:33

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Robert Whittaker left an annotation ()

I would disagree most strongly with the assertion that the release would significantly prejudice Royal Mail's commercial interests. I would say that the revenue from advertising / cross-selling on any post-box search tool is likely to be minimal, and unlikely to do much more than cover the costs of running the tool.

Secondly, would it not be possible for Royal Mail to prevent the use of the data in any rival search tools by invoking their copyright / database rights in the dataset? If so, this would negate any commercial prejudice issues.

I would also dispute whether such a search tool amounts to publication of the information. While it may provide a way to search for a postboxes in a given locality, it does not provide access to the full dataset without the user having to conduct a very large number of individual searches. Can Royal Mail provide the a list of such searches that would be collectively guaranteed to return all postboxes? If not then I would contend that the information is not planned to be published.

Moreover, it would appear that the information to be returned by the proposed search tool does not cover everything requested. The location of an icon on a map is not the same as the text in the "address 1" and "address 2" fields and it would not be possible to recover this text from such a map. There is also no mention in Royal Mail's description of the search tool providing collection plate and box type details. As they have not provided an exemption that applies to this part of the information, they should therefore have disclosed it.

Robert Whittaker left an annotation ()

Request submitted for the information for which they have not provided an exemption:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/no...

Dear Colin Young of Royal Mail Group Limited,

I am bitterly disappointed with this reply. You have not fully satisfied my original request. One would have thought, by enabling the public to have more information regarding post box locations and information about size and capacities of boxes, this would indeed generate revenue for Royal Mail with an increase of letter sending. Post boxes in their own right are a form of advertising and benefit Royal Mail.

I think Royal Mail is being naive to think that the general public in mass are going to pay money to find out the location of their nearest post box. As 99% of the information is already released into public hands, revenue created by this new project will be minimal. Surely this is a ploy to conceal information and ‘hold off’ as much as possible until forthcoming privatisation. Under private hands this information will be lost to the general public forever, and a guaranteed general decline of the service will commence, with a ‘thinning’ out of post boxes to increase efficiency without concerning the needs of the general public.

Your response about the new search tool does not cover all aspects of my request and therefore I request yet another internal review. As Robert Whittacker mentions, there is no reference to box number (i.e. WS1 4), Royal Mail box type (i.e. wall box, lamp box, B-type, C-type double aperture) nor collection time plate code (CP1 or SCP7). As you can appreciate, such information is vital to the public in deciding what such kinds of mail to post from varying locations. For example, a wall box C with CP5 code, confirms to the public that the box is of low capacity with very narrow aperture and only suitable for posting small size letters only. I therefore request an up to date list of all box numbers, along with box type and collection plate code. I can then find the location of the boxes using the new tool.

Finally, maybe you can elaborate and clarify with regards to the new search facility. Will the tool display all the boxes in a given geographical postal area, such as for example, WS1, or will it display the nearest 10 boxes by distance to a given location? Does the user have the ability to moderate the number of boxes returned in the search results? Will it be possible to purchase the entire requested information on CD-Rom in the future, as like post code lists etc?

Kind regards,

John Gow

Dear Royal Mail Group Limited,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Royal Mail Group Limited's handling of my FOI request 'Royal Mail Post Box Types, Collection Times & Collection Plate Types 2010'. The below message covers my reasons.

Dear Royal Mail Group Limited,

I am bitterly disappointed with this reply. You have not fully
satisfied my original request. One would have thought, by enabling
the public to have more information regarding post box locations
and information about size and capacities of boxes, this would
indeed generate revenue for Royal Mail with an increase of letter
sending. Post boxes in their own right are a form of advertising
and benefit Royal Mail.

I think Royal Mail is being naive to think that the general public
in mass are going to pay money to find out the location of their
nearest post box. As 99% of the information is already released
into public hands, revenue created by this new project will be
minimal. Surely this is a ploy to conceal information and ‘hold
off’ as much as possible until forthcoming privatisation. Under
private hands this information will be lost to the general public
forever, and a guaranteed general decline of the service will
commence, with a ‘thinning’ out of post boxes to increase
efficiency without concerning the needs of the general public.

Your response about the new search tool does not cover all aspects
of my request and therefore I request yet another internal review.
As Robert Whittacker mentions, there is no reference to box number
(i.e. WS1 4), Royal Mail box type (i.e. wall box, lamp box, B-type,
C-type double aperture) nor collection time plate code (CP1 or
SCP7). As you can appreciate, such information is vital to the
public in deciding what such kinds of mail to post from varying
locations. For example, a wall box C with CP5 code, confirms to the
public that the box is of low capacity with very narrow aperture
and only suitable for posting small size letters only. I therefore
request an up to date list of all box numbers, along with box type
and collection plate code. I can then find the location of the
boxes using the new tool.

Finally, maybe you can elaborate and clarify with regards to the
new search facility. Will the tool display all the boxes in a given
geographical postal area, such as for example, WS1, or will it
display the nearest 10 boxes by distance to a given location? Does
the user have the ability to moderate the number of boxes returned
in the search results? Will it be possible to purchase the entire
requested information on CD-Rom in the future, as like post code
lists etc?

Kind regards,

John Gow

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ro...

Yours faithfully,

John Gow

Royal Mail Group Limited

Dear Mr Gow

Re: Internal Review under the Freedom of Information Act

Thank you for your email received 27/11/2010 requesting an internal review
of Royal Mail Group’s reply to your request for information under the
Freedom of Information Act 2000. This is receiving our attention and we
will write to you again once the internal review has been concluded.

In accordance with guidelines from the Information Commissioner’s Office,
Royal Mail will answer all appeals and requests for internal review of FOI
requests as soon as it reasonably can. This will usually be within 20
working days and in any case no later than 40 days from receipt of the
appeal.

In the mean time if you have any questions or would like to add any further
information for consideration then please do not hesitate to contact me.

Yours sincerely,

MF Khushi
Company Secretary's Office

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group Ltd. Registered in England
and Wales.
Registered number 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment,
LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ

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Royal Mail Group Limited

1 Attachment

Dear Mr Gow,

Please find attached a letter concerning your request for information from
Royal Mail Group.
(See attached file: Gow IR 20-12-2010.pdf)
Yours sincerely

Colin Young
Freedom of Information Manager
[Royal Mail Group request email]

Royal Mail is a trading name of Royal Mail Group Ltd. Registered in England
and Wales.
Registered number 4138203. Registered office at 100 Victoria Embankment,
LONDON, EC4Y 0HQ

|---------+------------------------------------------->
| | John Gow |
| | <request-46883-bfc3f427@whatdoth|
| | eyknow.com> |
| | Sent by: John Gow |
| | <request-46883-bfc3f427@whatdoth|
| | eyknow.com> |
| | |
| | |
| | 27/11/2010 14:42 |
|---------+------------------------------------------->
>------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|
| |
| To: FOI requests at Royal Mail Group <[Royal Mail Group request email]> |
| cc: |
| Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - Royal Mail Post Box Types, Collection Times & Collection |
| Plate Types 2010 |
>------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------|

Dear Royal Mail Group Limited,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of
Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Royal Mail Group
Limited's handling of my FOI request 'Royal Mail Post Box Types,
Collection Times & Collection Plate Types 2010'. The below message
covers my reasons.

Dear Royal Mail Group Limited,

I am bitterly disappointed with this reply. You have not fully
satisfied my original request. One would have thought, by enabling
the public to have more information regarding post box locations
and information about size and capacities of boxes, this would
indeed generate revenue for Royal Mail with an increase of letter
sending. Post boxes in their own right are a form of advertising
and benefit Royal Mail.

I think Royal Mail is being naive to think that the general public
in mass are going to pay money to find out the location of their
nearest post box. As 99% of the information is already released
into public hands, revenue created by this new project will be
minimal. Surely this is a ploy to conceal information and ‘hold
off’ as much as possible until forthcoming privatisation. Under
private hands this information will be lost to the general public
forever, and a guaranteed general decline of the service will
commence, with a ‘thinning’ out of post boxes to increase
efficiency without concerning the needs of the general public.

Your response about the new search tool does not cover all aspects
of my request and therefore I request yet another internal review.
As Robert Whittacker mentions, there is no reference to box number
(i.e. WS1 4), Royal Mail box type (i.e. wall box, lamp box, B-type,
C-type double aperture) nor collection time plate code (CP1 or
SCP7). As you can appreciate, such information is vital to the
public in deciding what such kinds of mail to post from varying
locations. For example, a wall box C with CP5 code, confirms to the
public that the box is of low capacity with very narrow aperture
and only suitable for posting small size letters only. I therefore
request an up to date list of all box numbers, along with box type
and collection plate code. I can then find the location of the
boxes using the new tool.

Finally, maybe you can elaborate and clarify with regards to the
new search facility. Will the tool display all the boxes in a given
geographical postal area, such as for example, WS1, or will it
display the nearest 10 boxes by distance to a given location? Does
the user have the ability to moderate the number of boxes returned
in the search results? Will it be possible to purchase the entire
requested information on CD-Rom in the future, as like post code
lists etc?

Kind regards,

John Gow

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is
available on the Internet at this address:
http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/ro...

Yours faithfully,

John Gow

show quoted sections

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