As this is being written, most school children are still on summer holidays, but they will be back at school by the time you read it and hopefully by then Sailesh Sedani’s big issue with Menzies Distribution will be solved.
In the 12 August issue I asked newsagents whether they knew their SDTs (Scheduled Delivery Time) from their RDTs (Retailer Delivery Time). This prompted a call from Sailesh, who runs Front Page, in South London’s Eltham. He said that, for the past three months, the deliveries had been all over the place.
He starts at 5am to get the rounds ready, but the papers arrive well after 6am and sometimes after 7am. He complained to the NFRN, but still didn’t seem to be getting anywhere. His messages to Menzies via the call centre never got a response. Only the previous week he was told that it was the papers’ fault – they were late because of coverage of the Olympics!
I decided that the best person to pass this on to was Dorothy King of the Press Distribution Forum. And even though she was on holiday in Scotland at the time, she dropped everything and rang Sailesh to take him through the complaints process. She established that Sailesh had been trading from the same premises for about 13 years, operating six rounds of home deliveries to about 120 customers. She also says that Sailesh felt that the reason he was receiving late deliveries was because Menzies Greenwich had merged two rounds into one and his drop is on the back end of the delivery, regardless of his business commercial requirements. His RDT had been agreed at 5.49am when he started out 13 years ago.
I think he is in a safe pair of hands.