PEOPLE are missing vital letters because of Royal Mail postal delays affecting areas in Worcester.

People are missing their hospital appointments or having to pay double the amount owed on fines after not receiving their post on time.

Cllr Richard Udall said St Johns residents are complaining in their droves as parcels and letters in the area have been arriving late or not at all.

He has so far received over 55 complaints from residents who were concerned over Royal Mail delays and others whose quality of life has been affected by not receiving their post on time.

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In response, Royal Mail said there were delays at the delivery office due to sick absences and vacancies. 

The company added that it is going through a recruitment drive to solve the issue and has recruited 17 new staff members for the area.

Cllr Udall said: "The worst case we had was someone receiving their credit card bill and the letter they received meant they had to pay more after it arrived two weeks late.

"Other cases are missed hospital appointments, and another was someone missing out on a job interview. 

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"I was actually surprised and shocked at how many people have suffered a delay in mail and it demonstrates how many people rely on the service and the impact it had on their quality of life."

He feared that in the lead-up to December 25, "Father Christmas's presents may arrive alongside the Easter eggs."

"It may force people to cancel Christmas - I just hope Santa does not rely on Royal Mail for Christmas."

He said that the workers for Royal Mail are amazing, and late post is not their fault.

Cllr Udall has urged the management to make a change and fix the issue and, if it does not get fixed, he will be inviting them to a public meeting to address concerns.

A Royal Mail spokesperson added: "We are committed to restoring our quality of service to our customers.

"We have plans in place and dedicated teams responsible for improving deliveries in Worcester and throughout our delivery offices nationwide.

"In the lead-up to Christmas, we are taking on 16,000 temporary workers, more vehicles and additional parcel sorting sites to handle double the normal volume of parcels we expect over the period.

"These actions, plus others, are already making a difference in some areas, and we are confident that they will continue to improve the quality of service for our customers."