Royal Mail narrowly missed its target for delivering more than nine out of 10 first class letters a day after posting, in the run-up to Christmas, its busiest time of the year, new figures show.
They revealed that 92.3 per cent of first class mail arrived on time in the final three months of the year, 0.7 per cent below the target.
The second class target of 98.5 per cent of letters arriving within three working days of being posted was met.
Royal Mail said the figures showed that the overwhelming majority of the average of 59 million letters, packets and parcels handled every day, arrived on time.
The company’s managing director for operations and modernisation, Mark Higson, said: “Royal Mail’s target for next-day delivery of first class mail is challenging and we are disappointed on behalf of our customers to have narrowly missed hitting it in the autumn.
“Our postmen and women remain determined to deliver the best possible service to our customers.”
Royal Mail said the scale of changes it was bringing in, including modernisation and streamlining of deliveries, meant there had been a “temporary adverse impact” in some areas.
The highest-performing postcode areas included Edinburgh, Harrow and Uxbridge, both Middlesex, Ipswich, Inverness, Blackburn and Burnley.