Romford Mail Centre – Property Update
Further to LTB 370/19 issued on the 14th June 2019 and the update published in LTB 715/19 on the 19th December 2019, Branches will recall that the lease on the current Romford Mail Centre site was extended until March 2023 as the final tenancy arrangement with the site reverting to the landlord from that date.
Discussions on the future of an alternative site in the Romford Area and an operational solution beyond that point have been progressing in line with the terms of the Refining the Processing Footprint Agreement. This agreed process runs through a number of phases and has now reached the point where the business provides the union with their initial views on an operational solution. Royal Mail have now communicated those views with our Representatives and members at Romford this afternoon.
The initial views of the company are disappointing in that they have indicated that from the scoping activity undertaken their initial thoughts are that they have the capacity to move the workload in the current Romford site across other Royal Mail buildings within the Greater London area. In broad terms, the company have detailed some options involving the movement of processing work to other Mail Centres including the Chelmsford, London Central and Greenford plants.
While this announcement on initial thoughts is part of the agreed process, it is important that our members understand that the union does not accept that the initial views of the company on the future of a Romford site or on operational solutions are the right approach.
For clarity, the business has not announced a final decision and the CWU now has the opportunity working within the agreed process to develop and present alternative proposals with full input from our Royal Mail, Divisional, Area and senior Engineering and Fleet Representatives across all affected functions. Our priority remains the protection of our members in Romford across all functions and affected business units and our intention will now be to develop proposals for the retention of a site in the Romford area beyond March 2023. From both an operational and people’s perspective, we believe that this is the optimum solution and we remain fully committed to achieving a viable alternative long-term solution for Romford Mail Centre, beyond 2023.
We fully understand that today’s announcement will be disappointing and unsettling and further updates will be provided to our members across all functions as the process continues and our proposals are developed with a view to positively influencing any final decision. For our Representatives across the Greater London and Anglia areas it is important to note that no final decision has been reached and that the union’s priority remains to retain a site in the Romford area.