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U.K POSTBOXES (with context and history this time)

AngelinaPanda07-INGAngelinaPanda07-ING Posts: 17 ✭✭✭


First off I'd like to say I appreciate your time, and my question below is not meant to attack anyone.

Please read to the end.

Today a misleading leading and biased question was put forward and I feel

1. The answer given by Niantic lacked all the facts, knowledge and context required to give an informed answer 2. Has still not clarified the issue

The question was regarding UK Post Boxes. 

I want to address some issues. Firstly it is the opinion amongst the VAST majority of the wayfarer community that all post boxes expect ERII should be accepted as good points of interest. 

In your answer you stated only boxes that have ‘been painted with a mural or are historic for some reason' are eligible. This is a very broad statement which is barely relevant to the question. I want to address these two points;

- In the UK post boxes CAN NOT BE ‘painted with a mural’, it is a criminal offence to desecrate a post box in this manor. British post boxes are protected by the UK Department for Culture. Post boxes in the UK differ from the rest of the world. Yes there are a few painted a different colour to celebrate certain events, but the response containing the word ‘murals’ makes no sense. 

- ALL post boxes in the UK EXCEPT ERII could and SHOULD be considered historic.

Lets have a little post box history lesson

Pox boxes in this country have been around for hundreds of years, the ones that are still in use are the red pillar style boxes. 

There are many different types, each is marked with the royal cipher of the reigning monarch at the time (historic value right there).

Here is a VERY brief history of post box ciphers and their monarchs.  

VR – Queen Victoria 

Queen Victoria reigned from 1853-1901. The post boxes put up in this time are particularly interesting as there are many variants. There is the well know ‘VR’ box, but also cypher less boxes which were created as mistake and are still kept for this historical significance. Boxes installed during her reign popularised the iconic red style pillar box. (6373)

EVIIR - King Edward VII

Hand finished with the Edward VII Royal Cypher, this rare post box was erected during the monarch's reign between 1901 and 1910. 9 years is a short reign which limits the amount of these boxes that were installed. (4382)

GRV – King George V 

This post box was made during the reign of King George V during 1910 -1936. These post boxes are adorned with his royal cipher and are much rarer that the current ER boxes. Again there are many variants of this type of box each with their own history. (17176)

EVIIIR- King Edward VIII

Edward only reigned from 20 January 1936 until his abdication on the 11 December 1936, just 326 days! Meaning very few post boxes bearing this cipher were installed. Only about 150 are estimated to exist in the UK. (~148)

GRVI – King George VI

George the VI reigned from 1936-1952, just 15 years making this post box rarer than current ER boxes. (9410)


ERII - Elizabeth II 

Put up between 1952-recently. The most abundant box with limited historical significance however there are some design variations amongst certain boxes which could be considered interesting. However their lack of uniqueness and the fact Elizabeth still reigns limits their value as a POI . Their numbers far out weight the other past boxes. (69221)

I would like to add this quote taken from ‘Historic England’

“Post boxes make a significant contribution to the character and appearance of the areas in which they are located. In 2002, English Heritage (now Historic England) and Royal Mail, with the approval of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), agreed a joint policy for the retention and conservation of ALL Royal Mail post boxes.” 

That’s how important and historically significant ALL previous monarch post boxes are in the UK. 

So as you can see there are many variants of box for each monarch, each with its own history and story to tell. In fact there are 825 different types/sub types. In the UK there are many post box aficionados, and a quick google search will reveal many websites are dedicated to tracking and locating these boxes and sharing their history and locations. They are quintessentially British, and to compare them to standard mail boxes present in other countries is quite frankly an insult on British culture. 

To further my point that post boxes make great POIs

- They're well distributed which means even in new developments with no other POIs there is often a box which they could be submitted. 

- Safe to access, by their very nature they are safely accessible.

- Represented in the most rural areas where a whole village many have none or few POIs.

- They already form a vast part of the portal/pokestop network, preventing people from submitting them now would simply be unfair. 

- Even though there are thousands across the whole of the UK, when you break that down into distribution, some towns will only have 1 or 2 across a large area so its not like you’re over loading the portal network. 

- Things like coin operated amusement rides are considered good POIs according to your AMAs, yet they are mass produced, abundant and have NO historical significance yet can be POIs. 

- Tourist attraction/gathering spot. Apart from their intended use, many tourists jump at the chance to be photographed with our boxes. If you get a souvenir from holiday they often feature the double bus, black cab and red phone/post boxes.

Please could you revise your answer to clarify that all boxes EXCEPT the most abundant ERII boxes from the current present monarch make good POIs. 



EDIT: I would like to add, MANY comments on the original question made compelling arguments I had not thought to mention. I urge you to read @TheAuraStorm-ING @gazzas89-PGO @StayInTheBaII-PGO @Ech0Tom-ING @Pangarban-INGs comments, I think they will prove insightful, and echo the voices of the many rather than the few.

Post edited by AngelinaPanda07-ING on

Best Answers



  • jbling426-PGOjbling426-PGO Posts: 1 ✭✭

    I agree postboxes make great POI. How can you argue against this post?!?

  • YouLostAStar-INGYouLostAStar-ING Posts: 280 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @gazzas89-PGO maybe you don’t remember why we had to make a Postbox chat in the first place because most people were fed up of the arguments over it

  • Redpedals-INGRedpedals-ING Posts: 3 ✭✭

    Of course I meant EVIIR, not GVIIR. 😳

  • ZimBoyMark-PGOZimBoyMark-PGO Posts: 1 ✭✭

    I agree. And in my area, postboxes as stops has definitely enhanced game play! Losing postboxes would be a blow to the game.

  • NorthSeaPoet-INGNorthSeaPoet-ING Posts: 895 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Whereas I love seeing postboxes, I do feel that the games are becoming inundated with them, especially George V postboxes, which are probably the most common ones (after Elizabeth II of course).

    I'd rather see a Victoria, Edward VII or Edward VIII postbox rather than a George V or George VI.

    When I see either of the Georges in Wayfarer they tend to get a 2-3* at the most from me and even then, that's only if the description is good. If the description is terrible, in that it just says "Erected in the time of George V/VI" or something similar, it gets the 1* treatment.

    I probably see more George V postboxes in Wayfarer than I do anything else, so they are, unfortunately, a terribly massive produced one, and I say this as someone who has submitted several George V postboxes in the past.

  • YouLostAStar-INGYouLostAStar-ING Posts: 280 ✭✭✭✭✭

    Just a quick point to stop people worrying about postboxes that are already in game, Niantic do not remove anything already accepted if guidelines change so any postboxes currently in game will stay there quite safely

  • geoffenator-INGgeoffenator-ING Posts: 3 ✭✭

    I think the OP is being rather selective about what DMCS, Historic England and the Post Office are saying. They agree that all existing boxes should be maintained and retained but that's not the same as listing them.

    Royal Mail and Historic England wrote in 2015, "in 1972 the Department of the Environment – the government department then dealing with the national listing process – recognised that some rare early examples of pillar-type post boxes dating from the period 1852–79, such as hexagonal Penfold post boxes, 5 were of special architectural or historic interest. In addition some wall boxes have been included as a result of being part of the listed structure in which they are set or within the curtilage. About 200 boxes of various different types are listed at present in England." and, " as a general rule the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport sees no reason to revise the current criteria for listing post boxes and will not add further post boxes to the List unless exceptional circumstances apply. "

    I don't think anyone would object to the 200 or so listed boxes being turned into POIs, but the rest are just uninteresting street furniture.

  • Gazzas89-PGOGazzas89-PGO Posts: 2,529 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @YouLostAStar-ING I just had to look through it quickly to see how many people were disagreeing with you doing the question, not to mention if it was such a 50/50 split why did you write the question in such a loaded and bias way? No mention of the historical or iconic significance like you did originally? Pretty much everyone who's seen it, even from different countries, has said that it was obviously loaded/worded to be rejected which is why so many people are arguing against it. If you are so sure you are right then go delete your question and word it FAIRLY like this one has been instead of it being the obviously bias way you have done

  • Gazzas89-PGOGazzas89-PGO Posts: 2,529 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @geoffenator-ING from what I read of the link, it was revised so that all were for retention where practical, you seem to have missed that wee bit out, which is weird because its between the bits you've quoted, and would seem more that all the ones that were installed at that time were, if not listed, then protected

  • starwort-INGstarwort-ING Posts: 1 ✭✭

    In the centre of the city where I live, it seems like almost every street corner has a GR postbox. Now OK I live in a historic city, but that means there are plenty of Waypoints already, so we simply don't need every postbox to be a Waypoint as well. And particularly not in-wall ones, which are completely uninteresting.

  • geoffenator-INGgeoffenator-ING Posts: 3 ✭✭

    @gazzas89-PGO I'm not sure what you mean. I left that section out because it was not relevant. Retention just means that they will be kept operational and in good condition where possible. Protection has nothing to do with their historic value.

  • Gazzas89-PGOGazzas89-PGO Posts: 2,529 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @geoffenator-ING where does it say retention means maintained? Retention means the will be kept in place where possible, which is as close to listed and protected as you can get. You chose to selectively omit that part so you I'm guessing you really think its close to protection, otherwise, why leave it out? Why not just do the whole quote. Plus the entire publication makes it seem like all post boxes are historically or culturally valuable.

  • geoffenator-INGgeoffenator-ING Posts: 3 ✭✭

    @gazzas89-PGO I know what retention means and it doesn't mean protection or listing. It means that that the box will stay where it is (roughly), that it will be kept operational (where possible) and that Royal Mail will paint it. The document goes to great lengths to say that post boxes are culturally important but clearly says that only about 200 have sufficient historic value to justify Listing them for protection.

    There was little point in pasting even more from the document but I provided a link to make it clear who I was quoting. Why do you assume I'm posting in bad faith just because you disagree?

  • Gazzas89-PGOGazzas89-PGO Posts: 2,529 ✭✭✭✭✭

    What I've noticed quickly through all this, the minority that dont want them are ingess players.... wonder why that is..... I've seen other casual ingees players as well as pogo players happy for them

  • Dice3423-INGDice3423-ING Posts: 817 ✭✭✭✭

    We don't need 2 separate posts about the UK post boxes. Criteria is clear. No postboxes.

    In the potentially confusing nominations section in help. At the bottom in examples and other guidelines.

    Post offices - Eligible, as long as they are standalone buildings rather than individual postboxes, windows, etc. 

  • YouLostAStar-INGYouLostAStar-ING Posts: 280 ✭✭✭✭✭

    @gazzas89-PGO most probably because Ingress players actually care about the quality of the portal network as that was the instructions laid out to us by Niantic when we started Operation Portal Recon.

    it actually matters to us what portals are around whereas PoGo players don’t care as much, it’s just a stop to spin or an extra point of interest to create a gym but you don’t care about quality only quantity.

    like I said it a different thread on here I believe it would stop 90% of the disagreements between our 2 communities if certain wayspots were PoGo only. PoGo works better with quantity over quality and Ingress works with Quality over Quantity so people have been having these discussions for a long time now.

    the bottom line though is Postboxes make for low quality submissions, it is up to Niantic to decide whether they want to accept a large amount of low quality wayspots in their database.

  • Dice3423-INGDice3423-ING Posts: 817 ✭✭✭✭

    @YouLostAStar-ING Ingress players don't care about wayspots. They have there set wayspots in the lockers duplicating keys already. Some don't even add new wayspots.

  • Dice3423-INGDice3423-ING Posts: 817 ✭✭✭✭

    @YouLostAStar-ING Congrats. Some players do. Just pointing out there is an issue for ingress players to reject. Because some don't care about additional wayspots for ingress players.

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