Return to sender...letter gaffe leaves residents confused

Picture: Paul Jacobs (142476-229) PPP-140824-032155001

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BROOKSIDE in Gosport is a street that doesn’t have many trees in it.

So neighbours there were left baffled when they received a letter warning them their road had too many overhanging branches in it for waste collection trucks to make their rounds.

And the confusion only got worse when the residents saw the letter had come from the wrong council.

Fareham Borough Council wrote to all the residents of Brookside, in Gosport, by mistake.

The council refuses to say where the letters were meant to be sent for confidentiality reasons, but there is a Brookside Drive in Sarisbury Green.

It has now written another letter to the people of Brookside, in Gosport, to apologise for any confusion caused.

Gosport Borough Council’s Labour group leader, Councillor Dennis Wright, lives in Brookside and received one of the letters.

He said: ‘How on earth can Fareham Borough Council be sending letters to Gosport and not notice?

‘I had people knocking on my door asking me what was going on and why they had letters from Fareham.

‘There are very few trees in Brookside in Gosport, just the ones in people’s gardens.

‘I have received a letter of apology from them so they did act quickly to put things right.

‘I rang the council and got through to someone who said they had several complaints about it.’

The letter was sent from the council’s refuse and recycling manager.

It said council vehicles were having trouble getting into the road because of overhanging branches and reminded people that it was the landowners’ responsibility to ensure safe access for vehicles.

The letter included a warning that if no action was taken to cut down the vegetation within six weeks, Fareham council would consider stopping its rubbish collection vehicles from entering the street altogether.

A spokeswoman for Fareham Borough Council said: ‘Due to an input error the letters were sent to the incorrect address.

‘A follow-up letter has been sent to those residents in Brookside to apologise.’