Britain's first national postal strike began at midnight tonight (Tuesday) threatening to cripple mail deliveries and disrupt telephone, telegraph and telex services at home and abroad.
SV Post Office workers sorting mail.
SV Mail collected from pigeon holes.
SV Pirate post pamphlets handed out.
SV Letters collected by pirates (2 shots)
SV Mail being sorted (3 shots)
SV & CU Emergency stamps placed on letters (4 shots)
CU ZOOM to SV.... message attached to pigeons claw (2 shots)
SV & CU Pigeon released (2 shots)
LV PAN Pigeon flies away.
Initials JMR/BOB/CO/3.43 JMR/BOB/CO/4.26
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Britain's first national postal strike began at midnight tonight (Tuesday) threatening to cripple mail deliveries and disrupt telephone, telegraph and telex services at home and abroad. But many Britons are using their initiative to see that the mail gets through.
With the traditional British flair for improvisation in adversity, a network of 'pirate" postal services has sprung up to Keep the letters flowing.
In Central London, a Chelsea builder has organised a sophisticated postal service and his employees have been out at busy centres, distributing leaflets explaining it all. Collecting points have been set up with plastic sacks to take the mail. The letters are then sorted according to postal districts. It all looks very professional and the first-day covers could prove as attractive to stamp collectors as the official ones. The charge is two shillings a time for letters to London destinations and up to seven shillings for the Continent of Europe. Similar services have been set up in many other towns.
An international firm of insurance brokers has arranged for a man to fly from London to Paris every day. His job is to pick up messages telexed to the French capital from the British firm's clients all over the world.
Perhaps the strangest way to beat the strike is by Concorde-that's the name of a homing pigeon that is providing an airmail service between a printing firm in Devon and its factory in Buckinghamshire. Even if the delivery is not supersonic, the firm says that Concorde and 40 other pigeons will deliver the messages at top speed - on microfilm.