News & Press

Consumer Focus Post response to Royal Mail price announcement

Published: 1 March 2013

Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy of Consumer Focus Post said: “Posting letters and parcels is an essential service and consumers are looking much harder at value for money and quality of service, even on the price of a stamp. “This year’s freeze on stamp prices for letters, following the big rise last year, is [...]

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Consumer Focus Post News

Consumer Focus Post response to Royal Mail price announcement

Published: 1 March 2013

Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy of Consumer Focus Post said: “Posting letters and parcels is an essential service and consumers are looking much harder at value for money and quality of service, even on the price of a stamp. “This year’s freeze on stamp prices for letters, following the big rise last year, is [...]

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Consultation on the first Annual Plan for a new Regulated Industries Unit published

Published: 14 January 2013

Created as part of the wider Consumer Landscape reforms,1 the provisionally named Regulated Industries Unit (RIU) takes over Consumer Focus’ responsibilities as the statutory representative for consumers in energy, postal services and for water in Scotland. It will also be a voice on many of the issues that are common to markets subject to economic [...]

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Think ahead to avoid Christmas post panic urges consumer watchdog

Published: 30 November 2012

Consumer Focus Post is urging people to avoid possible disappointment this Christmas by posting cards and presents and ordering online shopping early. New research1 by Consumer Focus Post reveals that last Christmas: almost two-thirds (63 per cent) of people did not know the last posting dates for items to arrive on time approximately 90,0002 people [...]

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Post Office wins the DVLA contract

Published: 13 November 2012

Responding to the news that the Post Office has won the DVLA contract, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy of Consumer Focus Post said: ‘This is a win-win decision for consumers and the Post Office. Winning the DVLA contract will help to secure the sustainability of the Post Office’s network and maintain the service customers [...]

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Ofcom allows Royal Mail’s ‘delivery to neighbour’ scheme to go ahead

Published: 27 September 2012

Welcoming Ofcom’s decision to allow Royal Mail to roll-out its ‘delivery to neighbours’ initiative nationwide, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy at Consumer Focus Post said:  ‘This is good news for consumers. Missed deliveries are an increasing inconvenience for many people and giving postmen the option to leave undeliverable post with a neighbour is one [...]

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New nationwide mail delivery option

Published: 17 August 2012

Responding to Royal Mail’s plans to roll-out its delivery to neighbours initiative nationwide, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy at Consumer Focus Post, said: ‘As we do more of our shopping online, missed deliveries are becoming an increasing inconvenience for customers. Many people will be at work when deliveries are made and need alternative ways [...]

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Consumer Focus asks whether our postal service needs to change to stay ahead

Published: 23 July 2012

A new report from Consumer Focus – Sense and Sustainability – explores how 21st century consumers are likely to use the postal service in the future given the range of communication options available to them. The report is intended to encourage debate on how the postal service should change to meet the needs of consumers [...]

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Consumer Focus’s response to the BIS Select Committee report into the Post Office Network Transformation

Published: 17 July 2012

Consumer Focus welcomes the key findings of this report. It is a comprehensive review of the challenges Post Office Limited (POL) faces in implementing its ambitious Network Transformation programme. It poses a number of questions which need to be addressed for the programme to succeed.  Mike O’Connor, Chief Executive of Consumer Focus said: ‘We welcome [...]

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Consumer Focus Post response to Ofcom consultation on Royal Mail’s ‘delivery to neighbour’ scheme

Published: 11 July 2012

In response to the announcement of Ofcom’s consultation on Royal Mail’s ‘delivery to neighbours’ scheme, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy, Consumer Focus Post said: ‘We welcome today’s consultation of a wider roll-out of the delivery to neighbours scheme, as long as it is well promoted and consumers retain the right to opt out if they [...]

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Consumer watchdog sets out moves needed to make post office changes work better for customers

Published: 11 May 2012

Consumer Focus, the UK postal watchdog, is calling for improvements to the new Post Office Local (PO Local) model, if it is to work better for consumers. The call comes as a new report from the watchdog – ‘Open all hours’ – shows that while the new model has potential benefits, there are unresolved problems [...]

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NI missing the opportunity to get the most out of Post Offices

Published: 30 April 2012

A new report ‘A front office for government services’ by Consumer Focus Post, the postal consumer champion in Northern Ireland (NI), says post offices could and should be providing more key government services. This would have dual benefits of improving access to services for consumers and increasing the sustainability of the post office network that [...]

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Stamp prices

Published: 27 March 2012

Responding to the news of stamp prices announced today, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy at Consumer Focus Post said: ‘This is not great news for consumers. I doubt anyone is going to think about the challenges facing Royal Mail when they are paying 60p for a first class stamp. Unfortunately, the economics of Royal [...]

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Challenges facing postal deliveries to flats in Northern Ireland

Published: 15 March 2012

A new report published today by Consumer Focus Post – called ‘Letter Lockout’1 – explores the nature and extent of mail delivery problems experienced by consumers living in flats across Northern Ireland. While most residents of flats express high levels of satisfaction with their postal service provided by Royal Mail, the new findings also reveal [...]

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Post office transformation programme must deliver a reliable and sustainable local network – says Consumer Focus Post

Published: 9 March 2012

Responding to Post Office Limited’s plans for a network transformation programme which will turn 6,000 branches across the UK, including Northern Ireland, into Post Office ‘Locals’ and ‘Mains’1, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy, Consumer Focus Post said: ‘The Post Office network needs to be put on a firm footing for the future, so it [...]

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Computer problems experienced in Post Offices today

Published: 1 March 2012

Commenting on the system problems experienced in Post Offices today, Kellin McCloskey, Head of Postal Policy at Consumer Focus Post, said: ‘We are concerned that this is the fourth major service interruption in the Post Office’s electronic systems in nine months. We will be meeting with Post Office Limited to understand how the problem will [...]

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Consumer Focus News

Consumer Focus welcomes Ofgem’s decision to levy a significant fine on SSE for systemic failure in its direct selling operations

Published: 3 April 2013

Adam Scorer, Director of Policy at Consumer Focus said: ‘This is not a case of one bad apple or one rogue sales team. The problems at SSE affected the whole direct selling operation and represent a fundamental failure at one of our biggest energy companies. Other companies have also broken direct selling.  This has been [...]

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DECC’s analysis on energy and climate change policies

Published: 27 March 2013

Responding to the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s (DECC) Impact Assessment, Audrey Gallacher, Director of Energy at Consumer Focus, said:  ‘All serious projections show that our energy bills are likely to keep rising. Consumers have had to weather any number of energy price storms over recent years, and although the ‘cushion’ effect set out [...]

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Consumer Focus response to the final report of the independent Sergeant review into simple financial products

Published: 13 March 2013

Christine Farnish, Chair at Consumer Focus, said: ‘This report on Simple Financial Products could mark a watershed moment in the evolution of retail financial services markets. ‘Simple products are long overdue. They would, at long last, provide consumers with the option of no frills, no catches products that people can understand and buy with confidence. [...]

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Royal Mail price announcement

Published: 1 March 2013

Responding to Royal Mail’s price announcement, Robert Hammond, Director of Postal Policy and Regulation at Consumer Focus said: ‘Posting letters and parcels is an essential service and consumers are looking much harder at value for money and quality of service, even on the price of a stamp. ‘This year’s freeze on stamp prices for letters, [...]

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February e-Newsletter

Published: 28 February 2013

Work planning, comparing comparison sites, infrastructure investment, personal data and the green doctor. Plus videos about children in cold homes and consumer vox pops on in-home displays.

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Consumer Focus Scotland News

Consumer Focus Scotland welcomes Ofgem’s decision to levy a significant fine on SSE for systemic failure in its direct selling operations

Published: 3 April 2013

Trisha McAuley, Senior Director at Consumer Focus Scotland said: “This is not a case of one bad apple or one rogue sales team. The problems at SSE affected the whole direct selling operation and represent a fundamental failure at one of our biggest energy companies. Other companies have also broken direct selling.  This has been [...]

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Consumer Focus Scotland reaction to Royal Mail price announcement today

Published: 1 March 2013

Consumer Focus Scotland reaction to Royal Mail price announcement today Trisha McAuley, Senior Director at Consumer Focus Scotland said: “Posting letters and parcels is an essential service and consumers are looking much harder at value for money and quality of service, even on the price of a stamp. “This year’s freeze on stamp prices for [...]

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Consumer Focus Scotland response to Centrica Results statement

Published: 27 February 2013

We should not be surprised if consumers regard these results, and the warning of price rises to come, with a mix of resentment and dread.

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‘Face-lift’ needed to boost take-up of greener home schemes

Published: 11 February 2013

Watchdog says more to be done to boost take-up of schemes that cut fuel bills. Energy efficiency schemes have a key role to play in tackling fuel poverty and reducing climate change emissions, watchdog Consumer Focus Scotland has told a Scottish Parliament Committee reviewing progress towards climate change targets. Nearly 1 in 3 Scottish households [...]

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Drive to make online shopping easier

Published: 6 February 2013

Parcel Summit takes place in capital to get customers a fair deal A summit is taking place today on creating 21st century parcel delivery services which work for customers and businesses. Chaired by watchdog Consumer Focus Scotland and Scottish Ministers Fergus Ewing and Richard Lochhead – Royal Mail and four other parcel delivery operators will [...]

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Consumer Focus Wales News

Consumer Focus launch annual plan for new Regulated Industries Unit (RIU)

Published: 11 January 2013

Plans to address rising energy bills, smart-meter roll-out, the future of the Post Office network and the provision of Welsh language services have been set out today as Consumer Focus Wales launches its consultation on the first Annual Plan for a new Regulated Industries Unit (RIU). The consumer watchdog will be replaced in March 2013 [...]

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OFT advises energy efficiency firms on business practices

Published: 10 January 2013

In response to the Office of Fair Trading’s report Lindsey Kearton, policy manger at Consumer Focus Wales, said: ‘We welcome OFT’s drive to raise compliance standards across the energy efficiency sector. We know from our research that Wales has some of the most energy inefficient properties in Great Britain. Improving the energy efficiency of homes is one [...]

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Think ahead to avoid Christmas post panic urges consumer watchdog

Published: 30 November 2012

Consumer Focus Wales is urging people to avoid possible disappointment this Christmas by posting cards and presents and ordering online shopping early. If consumers plan ahead they may be able to save money by sending all of their Christmas items Second Class. According to Royal Mail, hundreds of million cards are posted to family and [...]

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Unity between local authorities needed to protect park homes residents

Published: 21 November 2012

Local authorities in Wales should work together more effectively to protect the rights of park homes residents says Consumer Focus Wales. The Regulated Mobile Home Sites (Wales) Bill aims to better protect vulnerable park home residents against unscrupulous site operators. But while proposals acknowledge the benefits of local authorities working together, the Bill does not [...]

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Consumers need prompt access to food hygiene ratings

Published: 16 October 2012

Consumer Focus Wales has warned that timescales for appeals against food hygiene ratings and for the display and publication of ratings risk significant delays before the information is available to consumers. There are also concerns about the knock-on effect timescales for appeals and publication of ratings will have on the display of ratings on the [...]

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