Break­ing through the vi­cious cir­cle of the waste­ful de­liv­ery of junk mail

The Daily Telegraph - - Letters To The Editor -

SIR – An in­crease in the amount of un­ad­dressed mail to be de­liv­ered by Royal Mail to house­holds through­out the coun­try (re­port, May 10) should be of con­cern to us all.

No doubt most will be con­signed, un­opened, to re­cy­cling bins. Royal Mail, it seems, is em­bark­ing on this in­creased de­liv­ery of junk mail purely from a profit mo­tive, with­out re­gard for the waste of ma­te­ri­als and en­ergy in pro­duc­ing such vast quan­ti­ties of un­wanted pa­per.

If ev­ery re­cip­i­ent of junk mail from Royal Mail col­lected the items, marked them “Re­turn to sender” and posted them into the near­est pil­lar box ev­ery Fri­day then the prob­lem of junk mail would be­come that of the orig­i­na­tor.

If such ac­tion was car­ried out na­tion­ally, how long would Royal Mail con­tinue with its con­tri­bu­tion to such a mas­sive waste of nat­u­ral re­sources?

G Fair­clough

Har­leston, Suf­folk

SIR – I now get very few pieces of junk mail, hav­ing spent the past few months re­turn­ing them all, un­opened, to the given post­code. I write “No more, please” on the en­ve­lope – and it works.

Jean Mac­don­ald

Hail­ing Is­land, Hamp­shire

SIR – By re­turn­ing our un­ad­dressed, un­wanted junk mail to the sender via post boxes, we do our bit to re­cy­cle waste but also sup­port em­ploy­ment.

Pam Barker

Bridg­north, Shrop­shire

SIR – Those crit­i­cis­ing Royal Mail for de­liv­er­ing junk mail are over­look­ing two things. First, we live eco­nom­i­cally com­fort­able lives be­cause of the suc­cess of free en­ter­prise, which en­tails ad­ver­tis­ing goods and ser­vices. Fly­ers form part of that ad­ver­tis­ing and pre­sum­ably pro­duce sales for their senders, even if the ma­jor­ity of us put them straight into the re­cy­cling.

Sec­ondly, Royal Mail is a busi­ness seek­ing to make prof­its. Why should it not en­cour­age that busi­ness by in­form­ing cus­tomers of its ser­vices, in­clud­ing de­liv­ery of un­ad­dressed mail? This would keep the cost of post­ing let­ters down for the rest of us.

Michael Sta­ples

Seaford, East Sus­sex

SIR – Of course the Royal Mail en­cour­ages junk mail. Af­ter the ill-thought-out de­ci­sion forc­ing the end­ing of its mo­nop­oly in 2006, it lost to cherry-pick­ers its prof­itable par­cel post and mass mail­ings.

The fi­nan­cial sta­bil­ity of a re­li­able, cheap postal ser­vice was wrecked. In­stead of par­cel prof­its be­ing ploughed back into let­ter post, they went to spe­cial­ist com­pa­nies. Let­ter post is still strug­gling. What should it do but try to sur­vive against the odds?

Mo­nop­o­lies need a watch­ful eye, but they are not al­ways wrong.

Mik Shaw

Gor­ing-by-sea, West Sus­sex

SIR – If junk mail is cur­tailed we would miss our daily de­liv­ery of rub­ber bands and would have to buy them.

Melvyn Owen

Somer­sham, Hunt­ing­don­shire

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