Flintshire OAP urges people to stop using postcode

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PENSIONER Max Cooksey says he has fought for 25 years to have his mail addressed correctly.

Now the 72-year-old is using the tools of the email age in an attempt to save his county name from postal oblivion.

Mr Cooksey, from Ewloe, is furious that plans are being drawn up to remove county names from Royal Mail’s database.

He has set up a website – www.saveflintshire.co.uk – where he suggests people should stop using the postcode and replace it with the village and county name.

Mr Cooksey, who has previously refused to pay his television licence over an address dispute, said: “This should make Royal Mail sit up and take notice.”

He continued: “Fifteen years ago the county I live in was changed from Clwyd to Flintshire.

“Almost every company I deal with, when told, corrected its database, except for TV Licensing and Royal Mail.

“Both these firms refused point blank to correct their databases.”

The two firms say all that is needed is the house number, street name and postcode and that the county name is not needed for delivery purposes.

But Mr Cooksey said: “What happens when a single letter in the postcode is wrong? Obviously you don’t get your mail. Is this progress?”

He is now urging the people of Flintshire to stop using postcodes and instead address mail using the village and county names.

Mr Cooksey, a retired electrician and photographer, threw his television away after he was fined for not having a TV licence.

He had refused to pay while his address was wrong and blasted Capita, the firm responsible for TV licences.

He says that for 25 years they have sent reminders with the wrong name, initial or address – even the wrong village.

They did get closer – but continued to fail to put Flintshire on his address, he said.

Mr Cooksey was convicted of not having a TV licence and ended up with fines and costs of £160 when he appeared at Wrexham magistrates' court in March.

Magistrates had said they strongly recommended his address be corrected – but it was not, so he reluctantly threw his set in a skip.

“I am Max Cooksey of 6, Crossway, Ewloe, Flintshire – now that's not very difficult, is it?” he said.

“I will buy a licence when they get my name and address right on their database.”

A spokesman for Royal Mail said it was not suggesting people should stop being proud of and using county names in their personal dealings.

He said: “We recognise historic and administrative county names are very important to individuals with a sense of history and location.

“Equally, however, there are many who feel the use of some former county names does not reflect the actual place where they reside and we should remove them.”

He added that Royal Mail had consulted with database users following concerns over the effect of immediately deleting county details.

“They have requested that Royal Mail continue to provide this information as a separate file until the review of the licence in 2013, and that after this point there should be a transitional period if this data is to be removed.

“The fact of the matter is that the ‘full postal address’ will ensure the accurate sorting, routing and delivery of our customers’ mail but may not be an exact geographical representation of any given property.”

What do you think? Should postal addresses retain county names, or are they now irrelevant? Have your say by leaving a comment below.

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