Postal service resumes for Hampton home after anti-cat cage fitted

Ian Wilkinson installs the cage around his letterbox after Royal Mail alleged his cat Snowball attacked a postman. Photo: Ben Davis/Peterborough ET
Ian Wilkinson installs the cage around his letterbox after Royal Mail alleged his cat Snowball attacked a postman. Photo: Ben Davis/Peterborough ET
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Postal workers called off their boycott of a house in Peterborough with an allegedly vicious cat on Wednesday (4 April).

Royal Mail said it has put the address back on its distribution list because the homeowner has put up a cage around the inside of the letterbox to protect postmen from his cat.

Ian Wilkinson's cat Snowball. Photo: Ben Davis/Peterborough ET

Ian Wilkinson's cat Snowball. Photo: Ben Davis/Peterborough ET

Ian Wilkinson (46), of West Lake Avenue, Hampton Vale, was taken off Royal Mail routes last Thursday after his cat Snowball allegedly scratched at a postman whose fingers poked through the letterbox.

On the same day, Mr Wilkinson fixed the cage the and told Royal Mail it was in place, in the hope service would be restored.

After five days without mail or a response from the Royal Mail, he contacted The ET. Our story drew international interest, with Snowball’s picture carried by numerous national newspapers and websites.

Mr Wilkinson said: “That the first I’ve heard of it, but it’s good news. I hope this is the end of it all.

“I told them about the cage last Saturday and didn’t hear anything back from the Royal Mail, and that’s why I went to the press.

“Since the story went into The ET my phone has been ringing off the hook, I’ve been getting loads of texts and comments on Facebook.”

Even before the cage was up, Snowball had to get past two spring-loaded covers and a double brush guard to get to a postman’s hand.

However, the simple cage adds another barrier to stop Snowball’s claws getting to postmen’s fingers, as has allegedly happened three times in the last five months.

Mr Wilkinson added: “The only problem will be if she figures out how to undo the latch and get into the cage to scratch them.

“But she would have to be a bit of a contortionist to pull that one off.”

Royal Mail was unable to give the dates of two previous alleged assaults on postal workers before the incident on Wednesday, March 28.

A Royal Mail spokeswoman said: “We have now resolved the issue with the customer, who has placed a safeguard around the letterbox.

“We have resumed mail deliveries to the address after temporarily suspending deliveries.

“This followed the latest incident on March 28, which involved the postman being injured by the cat and requiring hospital treatment.

“He had to go and update his tetanus inoculations. We always welcome the co-operation of our customers for taking responsibility for keeping their pets under control so that our staff can deliver mail safely.”