Postal addresses: a little history and a lot of photos

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Creative Commons Licence [Some Rights Reserved]   Text © Copyright February 2014, Chris Downer; licensed for re-use under a Creative Commons Licence.
Images also under a similar Creative Commons Licence.


The postcode area DN is based on Doncaster and covers that part of South Yorkshire (the DONCASTER post town itself including parts of rural Nottinghamshire), the northern part of Lincolnshire to the Humber estuary, plus Retford in Nottinghamshire and Gainsborough in Lincolnshire.

At Local Government reorganisation in 1974, the new county of Humberside was treated by the Royal Mail as two counties, North Humberside and South Humberside. The post town GOOLE comes under North Humberside despite being south of the river, being originally in the East Riding of Yorkshire.

It will be noticed that there is no DN13 – the proposed DN13 district in the event became S64.

NB Royal Mail ceased the requirement for county names on addresses in 1996 and these were not updated after local government reorganisation of the following year. Therefore, N. and S. Humberside remain correct county names, although this is somewhat controversial and discussed in a little more detail in the HU album.

DN1-12 – postal address DONCASTER, S. Yorkshire
SE5702 : Cleveland Street, Doncaster by Stephen McKay SE5904 : The Cumberland by Richard Croft NT5442 : Country road by Walter Baxter SE5902 : Doncaster College for the Deaf by John Chamberlain
SE5605 : Bentley High Street During The 2007 Floods by Hall Family SE5308 : Ridge Balk Lane by Steve  Fareham SE6411 : Bootham Crescent, Stainforth by Jonathan Billinger SE6813 : Thorne, Finkle Street by Gordon Kneale Brooke
SE7803 : Epworth Market Place by David Wright SK6593 : The Crown Hotel by Richard Croft SK6197 : Radburn Road by Alan Murray-Rust SK5198 : Conisbrough Castle from the Gardens by Mike Smith

DN14 – postal address GOOLE, N. Humberside
DN15-17 – postal address SCUNTHORPE, S. Humberside
DN18 – postal address BARTON-UPON-HUMBER, S. Humberside
SE7423 : Goole, Gordon Street by Martin Loader SE8911 : Church Square, Scunthorpe by David Wright SE9108 : Morrison's by David Wright SE7712 : The Old Market Hall by Jon Clark TA0321 : George Street, Barton Upon Humber by David Wright

DN19 – postal address BARROW-UPON-HUMBER, S. Humberside
DN20 – postal address BRIGG, S. Humberside
DN21 – postal address GAINSBOROUGH, Lincs.
DN22 – postal address RETFORD, Notts.
TA0721 : High Street by Richard Croft TA0007 : Wrawby Street, Brigg by David Wright SK8189 : Market Place by Richard Croft SK7081 : Looking down Bridgegate towards the town square by roger geach

DN31-34 – postal address GRIMSBY, S. Humberside
DN35 – postal address CLEETHORPES, S. Humberside
TA2710 : Grimsby Fish Docks by Richard Croft TA2709 : BBC Radio Humberside - Grimsby by David Wright TA2606 : Parade of shops on Waltham Road, Scartho by Alexander P Kapp TA2407 : Bradley Cross Roads by John Beal TA3008 : View to the pier by Richard Croft

DN36-37 – postal address GRIMSBY, S. Humberside
DN38 – postal address BARNETBY, S. Humberside
DN39 – postal address ULCEBY, S. Humberside
DN40 – postal address IMMINGHAM, S. Humberside
(separated from GRIMSBY in January 1997)
DN41 – postal address GRIMSBY, S. Humberside
(was HABROUGH, S. Humberside, part of DN37 until January 1997)
TA3100 : White cottages, Tetney by John Beal TA2503 : Waltham by Geoff Pick TA0509 : Victoria Road, Barnetby-le-Wold by David Wright
TA1014 : Ulceby by David Wright TA1814 : Kennedy Way shopping centre by Dennis Wetherley TA1610 : Yarborough Road, Keelby by David Wright


The area DT covers the western two thirds of Dorset, based on Dorchester. Part of the SHERBORNE post town extends across the border into Somerset, and of LYME REGIS into Devon. It has a classic numbering system, straightforwardly upwards from DT1, emanating from Dorchester itself and then spiralling round from the south to the northeast.

The DORCHESTER and WEYMOUTH post towns, which each have two postcode districts, demonstrate two methods of splitting the post towns into districts – in Dorchester, DT1 covers the town centre with the DT2 district a hollow ring shape surrounding the town rurally; whereas in Weymouth, DT3 covers the northern parts, with DT4 covering the town centre and south.

DT1-2 – postal address DORCHESTER, Dorset
DT3-4 – postal address WEYMOUTH, Dorset
DT5 – postal address PORTLAND, Dorset
SY6990 : Town Pump and the Corn Exchange by Nigel Freeman ST6601 : Cerne Abbas Giant after restoration, September 2008 by Maurice D Budden SY6879 : Early morning on Weymouth beach by Stephen Williams SY6577 : Military Base, Wyke Regis by Robin Lucas SY6873 : Portland: looking down on Fortuneswell by Chris Downer

DT6 – postal address BRIDPORT, Dorset
DT7 – postal address LYME REGIS, Dorset
DT8 – postal address BEAMINSTER, Dorset
DT9 – postal address SHERBORNE, Dorset
DT10 – postal address STURMINSTER NEWTON, Dorset
DT11 – postal address BLANDFORD FORUM, Dorset

SY4692 : The Town Hall, Bridport by Ron Strutt SY3391 : Lyme Regis: harbour and town by Chris Downer ST4801 : Beaminster: town centre by Chris Downer
ST6316 : Sherborne: the abbey from the west by Chris Downer ST7814 : Sturminster Newton: the cross and the White Hart by Chris Downer ST8806 : The Market Place, Blandford Forum by John Lamper


The area DY centres itself on Dudley and covers that part of West Midlands along with northeast Worcestershire. The KIDDERMINSTER post town area is one of the few which are in two separate parts, since DY14 does not adjoin DY10 or 11.

DY1-3 – postal address DUDLEY, W. Midlands
DY4 – postal address TIPTON, W. Midlands
DY5 – postal address BRIERLEY HILL, W. Midlands
NZ5720 : Disused Industrial Building, Off Pasture lane by Mick Garratt SO9488 : Old Swan, Netherton by al partington SO9193 : Shopping Parade, High Street, Sedgley by Peter Whatley SO9692 : Tipton street scene by Peter Whatley SO9287 : Merry Hill Centre by Gordon Griffiths

DY6 – postal address KINGSWINFORD, W. Midlands
DY7-9 – postal address STOURBRIDGE, W. Midlands
SO8888 : Terraced Houses, Kingswinford High Street, Staffordshire by Roger  D Kidd SO8483 : Kinver by Colin Smith SO9084 : Coventry Street, Stourbridge. by Annette Randle SO9284 : Lye - Dudley Road by Peter Whatley

DY10-11 – postal address KIDDERMINSTER, Worcs.
DY12 – postal address BEWDLEY, Worcs.
DY13 – postal address STOURPORT-ON-SEVERN, Worcs.
DY14 – postal address KIDDERMINSTER, Worcs.
SO8878 : Belbroughton Road, Blakedown by Philip Halling SO8276 : Looking up Mill Street in Kidderminster by Mat Fascione SO7875 : Bewdley by David Stowell SO8171 : Stourport: the junction of High Street and Mitton Street by Derek Harper SO6775 : Cleobury  Mortimer by Richard Webb


The postcode area E refers to east London, being entirely north of the Thames. The apparent haphazard numbering of the London postal districts was explained earlierin that, after the number 1 has been given to the most central district, the rest are assigned in alphabetical order according to their 1917 name, before postcodes were introduced.

Those original names are noted below in brackets.

All districts have the postal address LONDON.
E2 (Bethnal Green)
E3 (Bow)
E4 (Chingford)
E5 (Clapton)
TQ3481 : Whitechapel Road, looking west by Dr Neil Clifton TQ3482 : Witan Street, E2 by Danny P Robinson TQ3782 : Tomlin's Grove, E3 by Danny P Robinson TQ3994 : Chingford railway station by Nigel Cox TQ3487 : St Thomas the Apostle, Clapton Common by David Hawgood

E6 (East Ham)
E7 (Forest Gate)
E8 (Hackney)
E9 (Homerton)
TQ4283 : Keppel and Kempton Rds East Ham by Glyn Baker TQ4085 : Autumn in Lorne Road Forest Gate by Mike Richardson TQ3585 : Clapton Square, Hackney by Danny P Robinson TQ3684 : Urban dereliction in Hackney Wick by Alan Kinder

E10 (Leyton)
E11 (Leytonstone)
E12 (Manor Park)
E13 (Plaistow)
E14 (Poplar)
TQ3886 : Leyton High Road by David Bradbury TQ3987 : Church Lane, Leytonstone, London E11 by Stacey Harris TQ4285 : Manor Park Library, E12 by Nigel Cox TQ4083 : Plaistow High St by Glyn Baker TQ3780 : Canary Wharf and the Isle of Dogs by Rachel Bowles

E15 (Stratford)
E16 (Victoria Docks)
E17 (Walthamstow)
E18 (Woodford)
TQ3983 : Corporation Street, E15 by Danny P Robinson TQ4180 : Spillers Mills, Royal Victoria Dock by Alan Murray-Rust TQ3789 : Church Lane and Church End, E17 by Mike Quinn TQ4090 : George Lane, South Woodford by Robin Webster

During the Olympic Games in 2012, the Olympic Park and its associated buildings were given E20 postcodes.
TQ3784 : Stratford: view over the Olympic Park by Chris Downer

There are also the non-geographic postcode areas E77 and E98 reserved for specific large users.


The EC area refers to east-central London and essentially comprises the square mile of the City of London, albeit with slightly differing boundaries.

Because of the density of delivery addresses in this area, the four postcode districts EC1-4 are further split by adding letters, e.g. EC1A, EC2V. All postcodes have one of these extra letters, and each district uses all of A, M, N, P, R and V.

EC1-4 – postal address LONDON.
TQ3181 : Traffic Lights, Farringdon Road, EC1 by Phillip Perry TQ3281 : 1 Poultry, London EC2 by John Salmon TQ3381 : City parish churches: St. Ethelburga Bishopsgate (former) by Chris Downer TQ3281 : City of London: the № 15 bus passes St. Paul’s Cathedral by Chris Downer

There is also the non-geographic postcode area EC50 reserved for a specific large user.


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