I beg to move,
That this House
has considered delivery charges in Scotland.
It is a pleasure to serve under your chairmanship, Ms Dorries. Unfair delivery charges to Moray and other parts of Scotland are not new. The despicable practice of hiking up prices to deliver to mainland UK has been going on far too long and people are fed up. That was one of the key themes that I mentioned in my maiden speech when I came to this place and it follows on from the work of my predecessor and other hon. Members who have been seeking a solution to the problem. I welcome the true cross-party approach to tackling this injustice, to calling out the unscrupulous companies that think they can treat people in the north as second-class citizens and to highlighting this shoddy behaviour for what it truly is—an inexcusable rip-off of consumers in Moray and across Scotland.
What is the issue that we are seeking to resolve? First, I have to commend the work of Royal Mail, which continues to deliver parcels anywhere in the UK for the same price. When I visited my local delivery office on Monday morning, I spoke with the manager, Mike Sinclair, and the huge number of parcels to be delivered by our local posties over the next few days was clear. People who use Royal Mail can do so with confidence that a parcel going from Moray to Manchester will cost the same as one going from Manchester to Moray. Sadly, the same cannot be said for other companies and couriers.
So often I am contacted by local people who are frustrated because they have tried to buy something online, only to be let down at the final stage. They have browsed the products, made their choice and selected a delivery option that clearly states “delivery to mainland UK”, only to be told when they put in their postcode that the IV or AB postcodes in Moray are in fact on some island offshore the mainland. If that were not so duplicitous, it might be funny, but it is not. It is a lie these companies peddle to hike up charges, and we will not stand for it any more.