UK Postboxes Topic

Originally posted on the Niantic Wayfarer Vanilla forums in March 2023 and has had minor updates

One thing that people in the UK seem to enjoy [citation needed] discussing is our various postboxes which are marked with royal cyphers, so I wanted to look at a few things.

I am not asking for clarifications or a yes/no, despite posting here, but thought it was probably the right place for it and to try and make some kind of timeline of threads that discuss it, and some details about official views from Historic England & Royal Mail, and allow for some discussion with links and images.

Post Offices are mentioned in the original OPR guide, but not Post Boxes.

The earliest I can find is when a question was asked during an Ingress AMA, before Wayfarer was Wayfarer and was OPR.

This was revisited by the person who raised the query in March 2020;

Firstly an apology, I made a massive mistake last year asking the AMA postbox question but it opened a Pandora’s box that needs to be closed.

The majority of postboxes are just regular and mass produced, realistically the only interesting ones are Edward Viii ones as there are only 138 left. Penfold postboxes are interesting as they are visually unique and Golden postboxes have an interesting history as each one was painted in honour of an Olympic Gold Medallist.

please can we get some clarification that the more common and less interesting ones are not eligible. There are 18,213 GR postboxes and many are now becoming portals, add those to the 9000 GViR postboxes and that’s a lot of low quality portals entering the network.

In the above thread on the original forums, NianticCasey made a comment which is below on March 20th 2020;

Confirmed, if there’s nothing visually unique about these postboxes (i.e. that they’ve been painted with a mural or are historic for some reason) then they’re not eligible.

However, the debate about which cyphers are eligible and not still continued.

Historic England & Royal Mail recognises that some post boxes have greater historical significance than others (https://historicengland.org.uk/images-books/publications/royal-mail-post-boxes/heritage-agreement-for-royal-mail-post-boxes/) in a joint policy heritage agreement they did;

historicposts

which we were asked in review before the change in systems;
reviee1

As mentioned, the debate continued still with many, many threads to the point where they even took over the weekend trailmarker joke on the previous forums, and even information about how many postboxes there are for each monarch, including Queen Elizabeth II.

postboxes

Taken from the previously mentioned document from Historic England.

It is worth noting to non-UK reviewers that E II R postboxes will, in most cases only have a Scottish Crown logo in Scotland but these are the same as the regular E II R ones across the UK. If you’re curious, look up Pillar Box War on your preferred search engine.

Then, of course in September 2022 the monarch at the time, Queen Elizabeth II fell ill and sadly passed away. Unfortunately many used this opportunity to leap at the chance to submit a postbox with her cypher on claiming it was now acceptable as she had passed, which prompted views like;

I can’t wait for the inevitable threads on the implications recent events have on what post boxes are acceptable in the UK. I know there’s enterprising submitters firing up their QEII submissions as we speak.

I shared my own view at the time.

Postboxes are sketchy enough for their eligibility under Niantic’s updated criteria (great place to be social/exercise/explore) and many not meet any of those in many cases.
As Queen Elizabeth II has now sadly passed, this does not automatically make her cyphered postboxes (E II R) eligible. Do not submit them unless they meet criteria in another way (such as Olympic golden boxes).

Also discussed was the first C III R postbox, which has not yet been placed (to my knowledge) but would be of large cultural significance (there will be news stories about it) so I would personally rate that well for that section in a review.

I’ll close out this long post of images & threads with this scan about the first Pillar Boxes from Historic England’s document. Be nice to each other when discussing, and await the next very UK specific thread!

This is all just my own musings, and to provide UK folks a place to discuss these, whether submitting or nominating the familar red postboxes.

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I have tried submitting a Victorian one and two Edward VII recently, both old and rare, but they are all instantly taken out by the AI filter. But then I still get plenty of ERII ones to review. I dont understand the logic. I havent appealed my Victoria or Edward ones. I didnt know if it would be a waste.

Just to add to c3r, theres a decent chance he might not last too long, so his may end up bejng rare. Not saying i would submit them, but i could see people doing it

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Dunno if its still the case, but i got past rhe ai gilter by.never mentioning post box lmao i said cypher instead

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Are we even going to get cast iron pillarboxes with Charles’ cypher? The “royal mail” is privatised now and I have seen many modern postboxes that are just made from sheet metal with the company logo on the front.

I was able to get an Edward VII postbox approved last month. It didn’t get rejected by Emily and the community accepted it.

91968411-58ee080e1c6184ef9eda8305f6a2b79f

I realised I forgot about that C III R one after I posted this. Ah well

It’s on the fictional island of man so it doesn’t count.

I thought that was the isle of Sodor

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That one is real. You can’t fool me.

PM me your attempts at nominating these. :+1: happy to lend a hand.

I’d imagine the first few installed, probably strategically placed to please everyone, will have a gathering of charming, plastic flag on a stick waving British people politely applauding Charles and Camilla unveiling the boxes in front of insufferable dignitaries and over eager journalists.

Once nobody cares anymore, the next day, CIIIR cyphers will be placed over existing boxes. As a way of saving money a lot of the newer EIIR boxes have a small metal block at the front that can be removed and replaced.

Final-Elizabeth-II-Pillar-box~2

Same. With the rarity of the Edward ones I thought they would have all been done but found one on the front of a guildhall that hadn’t been, so that’s now in the games.

Culture is such an interesting difference. I once tried to get a US set of mailboxes approves as Artistic. Got voted down, and failed the appeal, though there were some back in the day that did see what I saw and said they could see it being eligible. Anyway, just a fun side story from my side of the pond that even a set of mailboxes that were unique, just couldn’t get past American Reviewers…

Felicity Landing Artistic Mailboxes

Harrison Township MI

NOT ACCEPTED

2022-05-30

Thanks for the appeal, Explorer! The object in question does not meet the Wayfarer criteria as this is a generic mailbox. We recommend you review the Wayspot Criteria before submitting your next Wayspot contribution: Wayfarer — Niantic Technical Support and Help Center

Rejection Criteria

Wayfarer criteria

Generic Business

Description

A touch of artistic flair to the everyday mundane. No two humans are identical but they are still human just like two felicity landing mailboxes are identical but they are still mailboxes. This is accomplished through the detailed woodwork and painting no two boxes the same shade of color.

Location

26025 Felicity Landing, Harrison Twp, MI 48045, USA

Supplemental Information

In artistic mailbox that adds details such as different shades of color and decorative wood working to make an artistic point of pride for the felicity landing neighborhood.

Adding to your images to show what those numbers actually mean @PkmnTrainerJ

How big must the UK be to fit in all these pieces of iconic history…

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I thought I had replied to this, but seems not. It’s been a hectic few days for me.

Does illustrate it very well, thanks for sharing.

No worries. I hope you are ok and just normal life hectic.
I’ll send you a thinking of you card if I can find a postbox…
If only they were all mapped out.

Heres one, so scotland normslly doesnt have lizzie 2 cyphers on postboxes, something something shes not the second in scotland something something. If i found one in scotland that had her cypher on it then, would that be worth submitting?

If you did then that would be amazing the last time this incorrectly happened some people got way too upset.

https://www.royalmailchat.co.uk/community/viewtopic.php?t=87181

I was absolutely taken aback when I saw it. I was confronted by something I thought had been consigned to the dustbin of history here in Scotland.

I thought I would never see these things again in Scotland. I’m an SNP member and a long-term independence supporter. I do wonder if this is the thin end of the wedge – I don’t believe these things happen totally innocently.

:upside_down_face: