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Mail centre

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Title: Mail centre  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Royal Mail, Mount Pleasant Mail Centre, Delivery office, Postal services in the United Kingdom, Stevenage Mail Centre
Collection: Royal Mail, Sorting Offices
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Mail centre

North West Midlands Mail Centre
Southampton Mail Centre

The Royal Mail operates a network of 39 mail centres.[1] Each mail centre serves a large geographically defined area of the United Kingdom[2] and together they form the backbone network of the mail distribution operation. The number of mail centres has been reducing as the service is modernised[3] and in 2008 there were 69 mail centres. In 2013 and 2014 a further eight are planned to be closed. Mail items are delivered to homes and businesses from 1,356 delivery offices, which are supplied by the mail centres.


  • Operations 1
  • List of mail centres 2
  • Closures 3
  • References 4


As part of the sorting process, mail is collected from pillar boxes, Post Office branches and businesses, and brought to the local mail centre. The process is divided into two parts. The 'outward' sorting, identifies mail for delivery in the mail centre geographic area, which is retained and mail intended for other mail centres, which is dispatched. The 'inward' sorting forwards this mail to the relevant delivery offices within the mail centre area.[2] The geographic area of the mail centre corresponds to one or more postcode areas.

List of mail centres

As of February 2015, the 38 operational mail centres (divided into Royal Mail regions) are:[4]

  • East: Chelmsford, Ipswich,Norwich, Nottingham, Peterborough, Romford, Sheffield, South Midlands
  • West: Birmingham, Chester, Manchester, North West Midlands, Preston, Warrington
  • South West: Bristol, Cardiff, Dorset, Exeter, Plymouth, Portsmouth, Southampton, Swansea, Swindon, Truro
  • North: Aberdeen, Carlisle, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Northern Ireland, Tyneside


The number of mail centres has been declining as part of the Mail Centre Rationalisation Programme. In 2008 there were 69 mail centres and in 2010 there were 64. It is anticipated that around half of these could be closed by 2016.[5] Oldham and Stockport along with Oxford and Reading all closed in 2009 Bolton, Crewe, Liverpool, Northampton, Coventry and Milton Keynes mail centres were closed in 2010. Farnborough and Watford were closed in 2011. Stevenage, Hemel Hempstead, Southend, Worcester and Maidstone mail centres were closed in 2012.[3] The East London and South London mail centres were closed during summer 2012.[6]

In 2013 and 2014 a further eight mail centres are planned to be closed.[1]


  1. ^ a b Quick change | myroyalmail
  2. ^ a b
  3. ^ a b Mail Centre Closures - a Freedom of Information request to Royal Mail Group Limited - WhatDoTheyKnow
  4. ^
  5. ^ BBC News - Royal Mail to cut 1,700 jobs and close two mail centres
  6. ^ https://www.myroyalmail.coms/default/files/courier/0716a905db154196b5652d3a53db066c.pdf
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