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Royal Mail blunder leaves parcels locked in back of van in Thetford

PUBLISHED: 10:21 24 October 2020

Royal Mail customers were left waiting for their parcels after a driver mistakenly locked them in the back of a van. Archive picture of a Royal Mail van. Picture; James Bass

Archant Norfolk Photographic© 2009

A delivery driver’s blunder led to around a dozen parcels being trapped in a van for weeks, leaving recipients in limbo waiting for their packages.

Just over two weeks ago, a Royal Mail driver returned to the service’s sorting office in Thetford with a number of parcels they were unable to deliver.

But before the parcels could be taken into the office, the driver accidentally ended up locking the keys in the back of the van – along with around a dozen parcels awaiting redelivery.

Among those affected was wildlife ranger Lauren Bowers, from Thetford, who is awaiting delivery of a £60 pair of designer shoes, which she ordered on eBay,

Miss Bowers was told to collect her parcel from the office on Tuesday, October 13, but on arrival was told of its predicament.

She returned to the office on four others occasions and each time was told the same thing – that the parcels could not be freed.

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She said: “It’s really frustrating, but kind of hilarious at the same time. You don’t really know whether to laugh or get cross.

“However, because of the delays I’ve now lapsed the time I have to return them if they don’t fit, so I’m £60 out of pocket if they don’t.”

Miss Bowers said she had been told that a spare key for the van had been made, but that it only opened the doors and started the ignition – and could not open the van.

She added: “I keep getting passed from pillar to post – I will call the sorting office and they will tell me to go to customer service – then I’ll be left on hold for ages. It’s beyond frustrating.”

However, after being approached by this newspaper, a Royal Mail spokesman said the issue had been resolved and the parcels would be delivered on Saturday.

The spokesman said: “This was an isolated incident impacting around a dozen mail items. We apologise to the customer for any inconvenience caused.

“We aim to deliver the customer’s parcel, alongside the other mail items, first thing tomorrow morning [Saturday].”

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