Royal Fail: Confused Romford residents post ordinary mail in Santa’s green and star-covered post box.

12:45 07 January 2014

Langtons School children posting their letters to Santa. Picture: Havering Council

Langtons School children posting their letters to Santa. Picture: Havering Council


It was a case of royal fail for some confused residents after Havering Council “elves” discovered members of the public had been posting ordinary letters in Santa’s special Christmas mail box.

Some members of the public added ordinary mail to the children's letters to Father Christmas. Picture: Havering CouncilSome members of the public added ordinary mail to the children's letters to Father Christmas. Picture: Havering Council

The “real mail” spilled out of the festive post box - which is bright green, covered in multi-coloured stars, and clearly signed - when opened in the run-up to Christmas week.

Official Royal Mail pillars are deep red.

Around 20 items were discovered among the 500 children’s Christmas wish lists bound for the North Pole, council elves confirmed this week.

One member of the public said: “Father Christmas’s post box was so realistic and confusing, that, when opened, a lot of ordinary mail was found inside, including pre-stamped Christmas cards to ordinary postal addresses!”

The box was placed near the Clock Tower end of Romford Market between December 6 and December 18.

An Elf, who works with Father Christmas, said: “We really look forward to getting the letters from Romford Market and this year Father Christmas wrote back to almost 500 children. Christmas is a very busy time for everyone and if real cards ended up in the box by mistake, they were immediately re-directed by one of us.”

The story echoes that of half-blind 91-year-old Alf Spence, of North Yorkshire, who discovered he had been posting his letters in a red dog poo bin for two years.

Early Victorian-era Royal Mail post boxes were painted green.


Latest Romford News Stories


A look back at the biggest local stories from this week 20, 40 and 60 years ago.

Athlete Christine Ohuruogu visited her secondary school St Edwards Church of England School in Romford to present a piece of the London 2012 Olympic track.

A former Olympic athlete wants to encourage young people to aim high as she presented her school with a piece of track from the London 2012 games.

Yesterday, 15:00

A theatre has taken a bold step to ensure that suffering from dementia should not be an obstacle to enjoying the excitement and delight of a stage 

Yesterday, 12:00
From left jewellery students Carol Carne, Gina Savill-Turner, Jo Golledge, chainmail queen Linda Parkyn. Daphne Freeman and tutor Carol Allen at the Fairkytes Arts Centre.

It started life in the mid-18th century as a private house for occupants including Joseph Fry, son of the famous prison reformer Elizabeth Fry.

Yesterday, 10:00
Student Alice and reporter Chloe Farand talking about the care suite at Havering Sixth Form College

Chloe Farand meets Havering Sixth Form College’s mental health officer and the care team, who support students day to day

Yesterday, 08:02
Ardleigh Green Road, Photo: Google Maps

CCTV footage of two men sought in connection with an incident where a woman was robbed and dragged along a pavement has been released by police.

Fri, 17:33
Residents from Orchard Village warn against plans for 750 homes in New Road, Rainham

People angered by a host of problems on their estate have staged a protest about the housing association as it presented new plans for 750 homes.

Fri, 12:54
Police were called after reports of an incident at the Thomson travel agency in Upminster this morning

Police are attending an incident at a travel agents with reports that the building has been cordoned off.

Newsletter Sign Up

Most read news


Show Job Lists

News from your area


Click on the banner above for full coverage of the centenary commemorations of the outbreak of the First World War.


£3,000 goes a long way at Boots

Cosmetics, toiletries, vitamins and more. Boots is the number one choice when it comes to purchasing daily essentials.

Kit yourself out and go Apple mad!

If you’re obsessed with Apple or just love a good gadget, this is a prize that will blow you away! An incredible £3,333 to spend on Apple goodies! How would you like to be the proud new owner of the Apple Watch?

Digital Edition


Enjoy the
Romford Recorder
e-edition today


Education and Training


Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now