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Hospital mail delivered to newspaper office

The Royal Mail has come under fire after the Scunthorpe Telegraph received 31 letters on Monday intended for the town’s hospital and a local college.

The paper has reported a number of cases recently where mail, sometimes of a highly sensitive nature, has been delivered to its offices.

Since then, readers have contacted the newsroom to complain about similar experiences of bad service.

In the latest incident, 29 letters, clearly addressed, most of which had the postcodes on, and were intended for North Lindsey College, some addressed to the finance department, were delivered to the Telegraph.

One of the other letters was intended for a consultant at Scunthorpe General Hospital and the other was addressed to its finance department.

As soon as the Telegraph spotted the error, the paper contacted the two business and arranged for them to send a courier to collect the mail.

The paper then approached Royal Mail to inform them of the mishap and was politely told it was ‘not your responsibility to redirect the mail’.

In June, a confidential letter was delivered to the offices of the Scunthorpe Telegraph, just days after a similar mistake saw information about a sex offender sent to the newspaper.

Graham Moore, a public relations officer for Royal Mail, apologised to the paper and also issued an apology to the people whose mail had gone astray.

When reminded of the number of mail items which had been wrongly delivered to the paper in error this year, he added:

“Every working day Royal Mail delivers 82m items and occasionally we do make mistakes.”

A spokeswoman from North Lindsey College, Kingsway, Scunthorpe, said: “We have a very good working relationship with the Royal Mail, who are usually helpful and reliable. Now this has been brought to their attention I am sure they will sort it out and resolve it.”

A spokeswoman for Northern Lincolnshire and Goole Hospitals NHS Trust said: “We are concerned that letters containing confidential patient information have yet again been inaccurately delivered and we will once again be speaking to Royal Mail to seek an explanation as to why it has happened again.

“We would urge anyone who inadvertently receives a letter which is meant for the hospital not to open it but to contact ourselves and we can arrange collection, or to contact Royal Mail.”

A spokesman for Postwatch, which is the watchdog for the postal service, said it would let Royal Mail investigate the problem and if the organisation was not happy it would take up the matter with the Royal Mail.

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