Ah, the red UK post box. An iconic, timeless image, replicated thousands and thousands of times across the length and breadth of the country. Barely a few hundred yards apart, a part of the community, a true local service.

I don’t live in the UK, I live in Ireland, and the post boxes here are green. One thing I’ve noticed about living in Ireland, and I find it one of the very few irksome things because I’m used to the UK set-up, is that post boxes are few and far between. In fact, in the country they’re almost as rare as hen’s teeth.

Obviously there’s a huge cost attached to serving an infrastructure of thousands of drop points for post, and I’m sure the UK has ‘streamlined’ its own network of them over the last couple of decades. That said, a local post box is a huge community service and makes it so much easier for getting your letter or parcel from A to B. It’s the inverse of the last mile, and in sales the last mile can be very expensive to serve. In Ireland, they have post boxes at the post office, but you’d be hard pressed to find them anywhere else in small towns or decent sized villages.

The post box is a dinosaur, I know. Sometimes, though, when you can’t get near the post office – or it’s located in a place that’s impossible to stop near if you’re doing a drive by, it’s a big headache getting your package away.

A handy post box is something I never take for granted, and always try to memorise in towns I often go to.

Advertisements