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Thursday, August 05, 2010

What's in a county

The Royal Mail is about to remove counties from their Postal Address File. The Royal Mail says you can still write the county in the address but you don't have.

This is bound to, and indeed is, going to upset some people. I imagine the residents of Rutland will get a bit narked.

Personally I'm not sure why people get quite so upset about counties. Lets be honest for most people a county is just somewhere we pay our rates. Oh we tell people we are proud of being from somewhere but in most cases its snob value. Croydon Surrey sounds better than Croydon South London.

When Middlesex was dismantled there was a bit of an uproar, in this instance no one is proposing dismantling anything. The Mail just think that they don't need counties to get a letter somewhere - post code is more useful.

Of course places move all the time along county boarders. Just this morning I was looking up Stanford Hall in my 1000 best British Houses and was surprised to see it in Leicestershire when the church which is next door was listed in the 1000 best Churches under Northamptonshire.

I once lived somewhere where my postal address was Hertfordshire but I was actually paying my rates to Epping Forest Council in Essex (and that was my voting constituency) and I was still in Essex.

Having said that there is one time I absolutely get behind my county and that is when Essex play Cricket!

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