In response to feedback received from personnel, the MOD has taken the step to extend its Enduring Families Free Mail Service (EFFMS) from 1 September 2015.
It will allow a further 1,200 personnel serving on joint operations on land, sea, and air to benefit from the opportunity to receive letters and parcels from their family and friends for free.
The EFFMS is delivered by the British Forces Post Office (BFPO) in conjunction with Royal Mail, and allows family and friends to send letters and items roughly the size of a shoe box and weighing up to 2kg from one of the 11,500 post offices throughout the UK to Defence personnel around the world.
Mark Lancaster, Minister for Defence Personnel and Veterans, said:
The importance of a letter from a loved one or a parcel of home comforts should not be underestimated. The free mail service is a vital element of the welfare support provided to our forces deployed overseas, and by extending it we are once again demonstrating the MOD’s absolute commitment to the wellbeing of our people and their families.
Serving on overseas operations is an act of great commitment by Service personnel and the civilians who work alongside them to protect Britain’s global interests. In recognition of this, the British military has always sought to provide a postal service that allows the loved ones of those who serve to maintain contact, right from the First Army Post Office servicing the Peninsula War of 1808 through to the EFFMS of today.
Our Armed Forces and their families make a tremendous contribution and sacrifice through their service and deserve the very best support, which is underpinned by the principles of the Armed Forces Covenant.
This extension of EFFMS builds on the strong relationship and history that exists between MOD, BFPO, and the Royal Mail, in providing mail support to the UK Armed Forces around the world. This is a proven relationship evidenced by the fact that in the last year Royal Mail handled over 1.3 million items on behalf of BFPO.
This relationship was further strengthened when the CEO of Royal Mail, Moya Greene, recently signed up to the Armed Forces Corporate Covenant to show her business’s support for the serving regular and reservist personnel, cadets, veterans, and military families who contribute to its business and the UK.