Disruptive Event Notification in respect of Planned Industrial Action by CWU Grade Colleagues

We are writing to Access customers about the planned industrial action by our Communication Workers Union (CWU) grade colleagues at Royal Mail. 


You may have read about this in the press, and to bring you up to date, we have been informed that industrial action will take place across the UK, impacting not only operations but administrative functions too.


There are expected to be four days of strike action on Friday 26 August, Wednesday 31 August, Thursday 8 September and Friday 9 September. The strikes are scheduled to start and end at 04:00 on each day, impacting the entirety of any shifts starting at or after that time on the relevant dates.


Though we remain committed to resolving this dispute through engagement with the CWU, we anticipate that most colleagues across the operation and in relevant administration roles, will take part in this strike action.


The reason I wanted to write to you about this now is that this action by our colleagues constitutes an industrial dispute and a Disruptive Event under the Access Letters Contract (ALC) and Wholesale Parcels Contract (WPC) which we anticipate will impact on Royal Mail’s ability to meet some of its obligations to you in our ALC and WPC.


In particular, it will impact upon our ability to deliver Mailing Items in line with the timescales specified in the ALC (i.e. D+2 for standard letters and D+5 for Economy mail) and the WPC (i.e. D+2 for parcels).


Though our sincere hope and expectation is that our ability to accept your mail during these strikes and to carry out our other obligations at handover will not be impacted by the strike, we cannot be certain how things will pan out on the days in question and what the calls on our scarce resource during those periods will be.  We would ask that you send your mail to us as normal during this period but bear in mind that the strikes could have an impact upon the interaction between Royal Mail and its customers at the point of handover, and the various processes and contractual obligations which are in play at that juncture.


Though the action is planned to take place on the above dates, the impact of it on our operation and our ability to deliver mail on time will exceed that period, as any backlog created will take some time to clear.


We cannot be certain when this impact will cease to be felt and so at present, we want to let you know that the Disruptive Event will apply to all Mailing Items which are in any part of our network in the UK at any time from 26 August 2022 onwards. We will let you know that the impact has come to an end as soon as we are able.