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Anonymous
Anonymous asked in TravelUnited KingdomLondon · 9 months ago

Can I put the borough name in an address?

Like if I was sending something to The Victoria pub in Dalston, can I put the address as:

451 Queensbridge Road

Dalston

Hackney

London

E8 3AS

Or if The Bald Faced Stag in East Finchley:

69 High Road

East Finchley

Barnet

London

N2 8AB

Or even The Victoria in Surbiton:

28 Victoria Road

Surbiton

Kingston Upon Thames

London

KT6 4JT

It just seems addresses in London (and the wider UK) make no sense at all! Like addresses in NYC use Brooklyn, Bronx etc. and addresses in Tokyo always have the Ku, Shinjuku-ku, Shibuya-ku etc. I think London addresses should officially include the borough, but I never really see it!

Update:

They don't make sense because they are not sticking to geography. Other countries (like the USA or Japan) have addresses that line up with their administrative divisions. Here it is just a random mess.

Update 2:

And Catherine Kingston Upon Thames IS London. As it is a London borough!

Update 3:

And finally, I do not mind if it takes longer. I will write addresses as I believe they should be written. i.e. if somewhere is in a London borough I will write London in the address (and the borough name) as it is IN London!

16 Answers

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  • Cara
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    You can, of course, but it's not necessary, as others have said. You are writing instructions for the post office, so the borough doesn't matter. All you need is the house number and the postcode. The postcode tells them which city, town, or village, and which street, and the house number tells them which house in that street to deliver to. It's an incredibly efficient and streamlined system. It is most certainly not "a random mess."

    If you were to write on an envelope:

    451

    E8 3AS

    [and UK, if you are posting it from elsewhere]

    it would be delivered to that pub in your example. You'd probably want to put the name of the person you are writing to, but the Post Office is not interested in that.

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  • John P
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    If you are posting, really the postcode is paramount, it is the only thing seriously looked at by postal workers in sorting the mail until the actual postman is looking at the number in the street. But there is no harm in adding London and any other local district name if it makes you happy.

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  • 9 months ago

    Does not matter if your put the Borough in or not it is the street and Post Code which counts.

    • Cara
      Lv 7
      9 months agoReport

      The post code includes the street.

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  • 9 months ago

    No need - just the first line and the post code will suffice.

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  • 9 months ago

    Kingston upon Thames isn't London so not only are you writing pointless information, you're writing incorrect pointless information.

    Why dont they make sense exactly? Because you're writing them incorrectly probably.

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  • Jon
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    Assuming you mean on an item being posted, there is no rule against putting pointless extra things in the address, but it creates a little extra work for Royal Mail staff working out which lines are the real address and which bits are irrelevant, and it makes the writer of the address look a bit silly. It will certainly not speed up delivery, and may delay it if confusing extra lines lead to post being misrouted.

    In your first two examples you have added irrelevant lines, but in the third (in Surbiton) an incorrect one, as 'London' is not part of addresses in Surbiton. The post town there is Kingston-upon-Thames, not London, and adding 'London' in the address may cause an inattentive sorter who does not notice the clash with the postcode to misdirect the letter via Willesden Mail Hub which handles London items, thus delaying it before it is re-routed correctly to KT6.

    I don't understand why you think addresses "make no sense at all". Very few items are lost or misdirected, which suggests that the current addressing system actually works very well. To call such an evidently efficient system a "random mess" is silly: if it was a random mess lots of letters would be getting lost or delayed - they don't.

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  • Connor
    Lv 4
    9 months ago

    I live in London and write my address as:

    Name

    Street Name

    City

    Postcode

    Not

    Name

    Street Name

    Middlesex

    London

    London Postcode

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  • Clive
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    You could, but the Royal Mail will ignore it. All they want to be able to deliver to the right building is street number and name, post town and postcode. In the first two examples, the post town is London but that's so big it's essential to put the postcode in. The last one is not in the post town of London, it's in Kingston upon Thames, so that is the essential line. I can tell because it has a non-London postcode.

    They don't even want the county any more Try looking up any address on their web site's Postcode Finder and you'll find out what they consider to be the correct format.

    It makes perfect sense when you realise the postcode itself narrows the address down to a small number of possibilities. I live in a block of 94 flats and we have 2 postcodes just covering the one building. American zip codes cover a much larger area, and Japanese addresses don't include a street name so the Ku is essential.

    The Royal Mail gave up on boroughs and counties because boundaries move from time to time, thanks to government shuffling them around. So they ignore them and use their own system based on areas covered by major sorting offices Not least when the County of London was abolished in 1965 and replaced with the larger Greater London, which swallowed up the whole of Middlesex. I remember Middlesex still being used in addresses though it no longer existed, until postcodes came along.

    Consider my Mum's address. She's in Buckinghamshire but the post town is Uxbridge, because that's where postal deliveries come from and it suits the Royal Mail. And Uxbridge's county always used to be Middlesex. Just dropping the county altogether removes any confusion and it works.

    • Connor
      Lv 4
      9 months agoReport

      My address used to be Middlesex with a London Postcode

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  • 9 months ago

    The Postcode gives you the small area where the building is located. There will be a number of other buildings on the same street with the same postcode. The first letters/numbers identify the area

    E8 = East

    8 which covers Hackney Central.

    N = North

    KT = Kingston.

    The last letters and numbers identify a smaller area - usually a street or part of a street.

    In theory, you could just put the Name of the building, number of the street and postcode. But obviously it is better to have Name/Number, street, town, County and postcode.

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  • Tavy
    Lv 7
    9 months ago

    The post code is the borough.

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