Sorting Britain Videos

Explore the surprising history of postcodes through our series of short films featuring the people who made them – from the earliest mail machines to modern marketing systems.

  • Journey of a Letter

    Find out about the role of postcodes in the journey of a letter and see the intelligent Letter Sorting Machines in action in Mount Pleasant Mail Centre.

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  • The Dollis Hill Researcher – Dame Stephanie Shirley CH

    Discover the story of computing pioneer Dame Stephanie Shirley CH, whose inspirational career started at the Post Office Research Station at Dollis Hill.

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  • The Coding Desk Operator – Matthew Mangan

    Royal Mail Manager Matthew talks about his experiences as a coding desk operator – the human link between mail and machines from the 1960s to 1980s.

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  • The Postcode Profiler – Professor Richard Webber

    Professor Richard Webber explains the modern use of postcodes to sort and define people across the country.

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  • Modern Mail Machines – The Royal Mail Innovation Team

    Visit the Mail Centre in Swindon, where Royal Mail are trialling new technologies to make sorting the post easier and faster.

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  • The Postcode Promoter – Paul Diggens

    Hear about the story of Poco the Postcode Elephant from former Post Office marketing man Paul Diggens.

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  • Middlesex University Animations

    Two short films created by BA Animation students from Middlesex University, inspired by the themes of Sorting Britain: The Power of Postcodes.

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  • Archive ELSIE Films

    See ELSIE and other Dollis Hill inventions in action in these archive films from British Pathé.

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