British postal workers returned to work today (Monday) after a 47-day strike, the longest national stoppage Britain has seen since the second world war.
CU Mail being pulled out of bag in mail sorting office.
SV Letters being sorted on racks (2 shots)
SV PAN Postmen leaving on rounds with mail.
SV Women posting letters.
SV Mailbags being loaded into van (2 shots)
CU PAN Mail van moving off to show sign on side "Earn over GBP1,000 a year".
GV PAN Postmen's mass meeting in Liverpool (4 shots)
Initials VS/21.26 VS/22.22
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: British postal workers returned to work today (Monday) after a 47-day strike, the longest national stoppage Britain has seen since the second world war. They faced a backlog of 11 million letters awaiting delivery.
The situation is complicated by Britain's switchover to decimal currency which took place during the strike. Before the big post offices can open, they will have to complete their decimalisation switch and stock up with the new value stamps and money orders. It is expected to be a fortnight to a month before everything is running normally.
SYNOPSIS: In Britain, postal workers have returned to their jobs after a stride lasting 47 days. The postmen faced a backlog of 11 million letters in post boxes and sorting offices. Despite forecasts of massive hold-ups, many postmen began their first rounds at six-thirty in the morning.
Only first class mail is being handled at present, and the public have been asked only to send urgent mail. Estimates of how long it will take to get back to normal range from a weed to a month. The situation for post offices is complicated by Britain's changeover to decimal currency which happened during the strike.
In Liverpool the strikers stayed out an extra day and held a mass meeting. They voted to go back to work at midnight, but speakers complained that the union had sought a solution with indecent haste. The union has agreed to let its pay claim be decided by a court of inquiry.