Mark Reckless MP, Rochester and Strood, and Royal Mail Group Chief Executive Moya Greene officially opened Royal Mail’s new state-of-the-art Medway mail centre in Strood.
Now fully operational, Medway mail centre processes over 3 million items a night posted to and from addresses in the Canterbury (CT), Dartford (DA), Medway/Maidstone (ME) and Tonbridge (TN) areas.
Medway mail centre is a key part of the £70 million Royal Mail is investing in modernising its operations across Kent to ensure they have an operational network fit for the future. This will also provide better working conditions for their people and enable them to continue to deliver a high level of service to our customer in Kent.
Royal Mail originally announced it was planning changes to its operations in Kent in November 2010, and building work on the brownfield site began in May 2011. Medway mail centre started processing its first letters in mid February 2012 and it is now fully operational.
Mark Reckless MP, Rochester and Strood, said:
“It is fantastic news for Medway that Royal Mail has chosen to consolidate all their operations in Strood. Congratulations to them on making such a big investment and working so hard to bring their workforce with them, which will greatly benefit Strood, the local economy and our postal system.
I know that Royal Mail was delighted that, working closely with Medway Council, the whole project, from initial planning to becoming fully operational, went very smoothly and so quickly. With improved connectivity giving easy access to the M2/A2, Medway is showing that it has the infrastructure to attract large scale investment into the Towns and is open for business.”
Moya Greene, Royal Mail Group Chief Executive, said:
“I am delighted to officially open Royal Mail’s newest mail centre today. The completion of this project is a historic day in Royal Mail’s operational history and the culmination of a massive programme of investment. It will ensure that Royal Mail is equipped to deliver the cherished universal service to the people of Kent despite the challenging market conditions in which we operate.
It shows that we are a company that is not resting on its heritage but is looking to the future, ready to meet the changing needs of the communities we serve long into the future. I am very proud of everyone who made it happen and I would like to thank them for all their hard work and dedication.”
The new mail centre site covers 5.4 hectares, and the building itself covers almost 16,000 square metres. There are six new intelligent letter sorting machines installed on the site. These innovative machines sort mail into batches that can be sequenced into exact walk order to save postmen and women in delivery offices time when preparing to go out on their rounds. At full speed, they can sort up to 45,000 items an hour. There will also be five machines for cancelling stamped mail and one flat sorting machine for processing A4-sized mail.
There are around 850 people based at Medway mail centre. They moved to the new mail centre as the processing work transferred from their mail centres in Canterbury, Dartford, Maidstone and Tonbridge. This started in February 2012 and is now complete.
Royal Mail supported these people in this relocation by providing them with a two-week induction course prior to starting their new roles. This was to ensure that they were familiar with their new working environment and the new machines they would be operating, which were already installed in other mail centres in the South East.