A guileless tribute to lift the heart

I had the most beautiful letter through the post a while back. It was addressed to “Mr Mailman” with a heart above the i where the dot is supposed to go, written in a neat, child-like hand. On the back was a picture of a sleeping cat with a toy dinosaur behind it. The dinosaur had jagged shapes coming out of its mouth, like lightning. I think the lighting was meant to represent the dinosaur’s roar. The letter itself was written on the inside of the envelope. At the top it said “stuff + cats = awesome”. Here is the … Continue reading A guileless tribute to lift the heart

Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party purge and the retirement age for manual workers

I was one of those people purged from the ballot before the election for the leadership of the Labour Party. This is despite the fact that I’m a life-long Labour supporter, have been a member of my Labour Club for over 30 years, and worked closely with the Labour Party candidate in our constituency in the run-up to the last election. I am a member of the Communications Workers Union, and therefore an affiliate member of the Party through my union. I’m an active trade unionist, having been a rep, and have paid the political levy through my union fees … Continue reading Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party purge and the retirement age for manual workers

Dear Mr Mailman

A letter came through the post this morning. I don’t know who it was from. It was addressed to “Mr Mailman”, with a heart in place of the dot above the i, and a picture of a sleeping cat, with a toy dinosaur on its back. Here is the picture: It looks like the cat is dreaming about being a dinosaur and letting out that wild electric roar like forked lightning to frighten away its enemies. The envelope was green with circles and star shapes, and a big hand drawn star in the middle, which is where my address was … Continue reading Dear Mr Mailman

No need to travel to Canterbury to pick up undelivered mail

As you will know by now, the Royal Mail Enquiry office on Cromwell Road, Whitstable, has finally closed. This means that many of you will be travelling to Canterbury to pick up your undelivered packages. However, there are a number of other options available, and you should have received a letter from the Royal Mail outlining these. As it says, you can have the item redelivered on a day of your choice, you can have it delivered to a local Post Office, subject to a small charge, or you can have it delivered to a neighbour. However, there is one … Continue reading No need to travel to Canterbury to pick up undelivered mail

Privatisation of the Royal Mail

As I’m sure you are all aware by now, the Royal Mail was privatised on Friday. It was sold for £3.3 billion. Within a day the share price had risen by 38%, meaning that the company was seriously undervalued and some people made a quick profit. Billy Hayes, General Secretary of the Communications Workers Union, said, ‘If you sold your house and the buyer sold it on the next day for 38% profit, you’d ask “what was the estate agent doing?”’ Actually it is even worse than this. If you remember, the government took on the company’s pension liability two … Continue reading Privatisation of the Royal Mail

The Closure of the Whitstable Delivery Office

As you will know by now, the Whitstable delivery office is due to close on the 20th May and the staff and service be relocated to Military Road, Canterbury. It will be a sad day for postal workers and for the town as one more vital facility is closed and shifted over to the city nearly eight miles away. However, the staff are sanguine about it. We put up a good fight, we held the company at bay for over three months and we won some important concessions along the way, with significant help from you, the public, who wholeheartedly … Continue reading The Closure of the Whitstable Delivery Office

Post Office Closures and the Privatisation Agenda

As you will know by now, the post office in Gladstone Road, Whitstable is about to close. This will come as no surprise to people who use the facility regularly, as it has been abundantly clear for some time that it is being run down. There are hardly any leaflets available, there are no pens along the counter where the public queue, and nothing seems to be on sale any more. The whole office has a dreary and neglected air. This is only one of 70 post offices up and down the country that are due to close or to … Continue reading Post Office Closures and the Privatisation Agenda

A Murmuration of Humans

I’ve just come back from watching a murmuration of starlings over Cromwell Road, Whitstable. “Murmuration” is the collective noun for a flight of Starlings. Starlings don’t flock, they murmur. It’s an odd word to have chosen, since what they actually do looks more like reciting poetry than murmuring. They cut, they weave, they parry, they thrust, they wheel about in the air forming immense patterns of startling complexity. They shimmer, they switch, they swirl. They swoop, they dive. They split and then reform. It’s like a vast aerial dance of hypnotic precision in which the individual starlings come together to … Continue reading A Murmuration of Humans