List of postcode areas in the United Kingdom

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The list of postcode areas in the United Kingdom is a tabulation of the postcode areas used by Royal Mail for the purposes of directing mail within the United Kingdom. The postcode area is the largest geographical unit used and forms the initial characters of the alphanumeric UK postcode.[1] There are currently 121 geographic postcode areas in use in the UK and a further 3 often combined with these covering the Crown Dependencies of Guernsey, Jersey and Isle of Man.

Subdivision[edit]

Each postcode area is further divided into post towns and postcode districts.[1] There are on average 20 postcode districts to a postcode area.[1] The London post town is instead divided into several postcode areas.[2]

Scope[edit]

The single or pair of letters chosen for postcode areas are generally intended as a mnemonic for the places served.[1] Postcode areas, post towns and postcode districts do not follow political boundaries and usually serve much larger areas than the place names with which they are associated. For example, within the PA postcode area the PA1 and PA78 postcode districts are 140 miles apart; and the eight postcode areas of the London post town cover only 40% of Greater London.[2] The remainder of its area is covered by sections of twelve adjoining postcode areas: EN, IG, RM, DA, BR, TN, CR, SM, KT, TW, HA and UB.[2]

United Kingdom postcode areas[edit]

AB postcode areaAL postcode areaB postcode areaBA postcode areaBB postcode areaBD postcode areaBH postcode areaBL postcode areaBN postcode areaBR postcode areaBS postcode areaBT postcode areaBT postcode areaCA postcode areaCB postcode areaCF postcode areaCH postcode areaCM postcode areaCO postcode areaCR postcode areaCT postcode areaCV postcode areaCW postcode areaDA postcode areaDD postcode areaDE postcode areaDG postcode areaDH postcode areaDL postcode areaDN postcode areaDT postcode areaDY postcode areaE postcode areaEC postcode areaEH postcode areaEN postcode areaEX postcode areaEX postcode areaFK postcode areaFY postcode areaG postcode areaGL postcode areaGU postcode areaGY postcode areaHA postcode areaHD postcode areaHG postcode areaHP postcode areaHR postcode areaHS postcode areaHU postcode areaHX postcode areaIG postcode areaIM postcode areaIP postcode areaIV postcode areaJE postcode areaKA postcode areaKA postcode areaKT postcode areaKW postcode areaKW postcode areaKY postcode areaL postcode areaLA postcode areaLD postcode areaLE postcode areaLL postcode areaLN postcode areaLS postcode areaLU postcode areaM postcode areaME postcode areaMK postcode areaML postcode areaN postcode areaNE postcode areaNG postcode areaNN postcode areaNP postcode areaNR postcode areaNW postcode areaOL postcode areaOX postcode areaPA postcode areaPA postcode areaPA postcode areaPE postcode areaPH postcode areaPH postcode areaPH postcode areaPH postcode areaPL postcode areaPO postcode areaPR postcode areaRG postcode areaRH postcode areaRM postcode areaS postcode areaSA postcode areaSE postcode areaSG postcode areaSK postcode areaSL postcode areaSM postcode areaSN postcode areaSO postcode areaSP postcode areaSR postcode areaSS postcode areaST postcode areaSW postcode areaSY postcode areaTA postcode areaTD postcode areaTF postcode areaTN postcode areaTQ postcode areaTR postcode areaTR postcode areaTS postcode areaTW postcode areaUB postcode areaW postcode areaWA postcode areaWC postcode areaWD postcode areaWF postcode areaWN postcode areaWR postcode areaWS postcode areaWV postcode areaYO postcode areaZE postcode areaZE postcode areaZE postcode areaZE postcode areaAL postcode areaBR postcode areaCM postcode areaCR postcode areaDA postcode areaE postcode areaEC postcode areaEN postcode areaGU postcode areaHA postcode areaIG postcode areaKT postcode areaN postcode areaNW postcode areaRM postcode areaSE postcode areaSL postcode areaSM postcode areaSW postcode areaTN postcode areaTW postcode areaUB postcode areaW postcode areaWC postcode areaWD postcode areaWD postcode areaBB postcode areaBD postcode areaBL postcode areaCH postcode areaCW postcode areaDE postcode areaDN postcode areaFY postcode areaHD postcode areaHG postcode areaHX postcode areaL postcode areaLA postcode areaLL postcode areaLL postcode areaLS postcode areaM postcode areaNG postcode areaOL postcode areaPR postcode areaS postcode areaSK postcode areaST postcode areaWA postcode areaWF postcode areaWN postcode areaYO postcode areaMap of the United Kingdom and Crown dependencies showing postcode area boundaries
Map of postcode areas in the United Kingdom and Crown dependencies, with links to each postcode area
Postcode area Postcode area name[1][3] Code formation
AB Aberdeen
AL St Albans
B Birmingham
BA Bath
BB Blackburn
BD Bradford
BH Bournemouth
BL Bolton
BN Brighton
BR Bromley
BS Bristol
BT Belfast
CA Carlisle
CB Cambridge
CF Cardiff
CH Chester
CM Chelmsford
CO Colchester
CR Croydon
CT Canterbury
CV Coventry
CW Crewe
DA Dartford
DD Dundee
DE Derby
DG Dumfries[1] Dumfries and Galloway
DH Durham
DL Darlington
DN Doncaster
DT Dorchester
DY Dudley
E East London
EC East Central London
EH Edinburgh
EN Enfield
EX Exeter
FK Falkirk
FY Blackpool[1] The Fylde
G Glasgow
GL Gloucester
GU Guildford
HA Harrow
HD Huddersfield
HG Harrogate
HP Hemel Hempstead
HR Hereford
HS Outer Hebrides[1] First and last letters of Hebrides
HU Hull
HX Halifax
IG Ilford[1] Possibly Ilford and Chigwell, or Ilford and Barking[4]
IP Ipswich
IV Inverness
KA Kilmarnock
KT Kingston upon Thames
KW Kirkwall
KY Kirkcaldy
L Liverpool
LA Lancaster
LD Llandrindod Wells[1]
LE Leicester
LL Llandudno
LN Lincoln
LS Leeds
LU Luton
M Manchester
ME Rochester[1] Medway (now sometimes known as Maidstone[5])
MK Milton Keynes
ML Motherwell
N North London
NE Newcastle upon Tyne[6][7]
NG Nottingham
NN Northampton
NP Newport
NR Norwich
NW North West London
OL Oldham
OX Oxford
PA Paisley
PE Peterborough
PH Perth
PL Plymouth
PO Portsmouth
PR Preston
RG Reading
RH Redhill
RM Romford
S Sheffield
SA Swansea
SE South East London
SG Stevenage
SK Stockport
SL Slough
SM Sutton[1] Possibly Sutton and Morden, the two post towns that are within the SM area [4]
SN Swindon
SO Southampton
SP Salisbury[1] Salisbury Plain
SR Sunderland
SS Southend-on-Sea
ST Stoke-on-Trent
SW South West London
SY Shrewsbury
TA Taunton
TD Galashiels[1] Tweeddale
TF Telford
TN Tunbridge Wells[1]
TQ Torquay
TR Truro
TS Cleveland[1] Teesside
TW Twickenham
UB Southall[1] Uxbridge
W West London
WA Warrington
WC Western Central London
WD Watford
WF Wakefield
WN Wigan
WR Worcester
WS Walsall
WV Wolverhampton
YO York
ZE Lerwick[1] Zetland

Crown dependencies[edit]

The Crown dependencies (which are not part of the United Kingdom) did not introduce postcodes until later, but use a similar coding scheme. They are separate postal authorities.[1]

Postcode area Postcode area name
GY Guernsey
JE Jersey
IM Isle of Man

Defunct postcode areas[edit]

London NE and S[edit]

Glasgow[edit]

Glasgow, like London, was divided into compass districts: C, W, NW, N, E, SE, S, SW. When postcodes were introduced, these were mapped into the new G postcode: C1 became G1, W1 became G11, N1 became G21, E1 became G31, S1 became G41, SW1 became G51, and so on. As NW and SE had never been subdivided they became G20 and G40 respectively.

Norwich and Croydon[edit]

Norwich and Croydon were used for a postcode experiment in the late 1960s, which was replaced by the current system. The format was of the form NOR or CRO followed by two numbers and a letter, e.g. NOR 07A.

Non-geographic postcodes[edit]

Note that a number of non-geographic postcode sectors are also contained within geographic postcode areas.

GIR[edit]

GIR 0AA is a postcode created for Girobank in Bootle. It remained in use by its successors when Girobank was taken over by Alliance & Leicester and subsequently by Santander UK.

BF[edit]

The BF postcode area was introduced in 2012 to provide optional postcodes for British Forces Post Office addresses, for consistency with the layout of other UK addresses. It uses the national non-geographic post town "BFPO" and, as of 2012, the postcode district "BF1".

BX[edit]

The non-geographic postcode area BX has been introduced for addresses which do not include a locality: this allows large organisations long-term flexibility as to where they receive their mail. This postcode area is used by Lloyds Banking Group (BX1 1LT) and parts of the HM Revenue and Customs like VAT Central Unit (BX5 5AT) and Pay as You Earn (BX9 1AS). Lloyds Bank also use BX4. After splitting from Lloyds, TSB Bank uses BX4 7SB, the latter part of which, when written, looks similar to "TSB".

QC[edit]

QC postcodes are used by awarding bodies when receiving examination scripts from centres via Parcelforce. For example, Edexcel use the postcode QC77 7ZZ.

XX[edit]

The non-geographic postcode area XX is used by online retailers for returns by Royal Mail.

Retailer XX Postcodes
Amazon.com XX10 1DD (Scottish Distribution Centre)[8]
XX50 1DD (ditto)
XX30 1FF (South West Distribution Centre)
ASOS.com XX10 1AA
Boohoo.com XX10 1BB
John Lewis XX10 1EE
Zara XX40 1EJ

Overseas territories[edit]

Certain British Overseas Territories have postcodes:

Postcode Location
AI-2640 Anguilla[9]

ASCN 1ZZ
STHL 1ZZ
TDCU 1ZZ
Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da Cunha:
Ascension Island
Saint Helena
Tristan da Cunha[10]
BBND 1ZZ British Indian Ocean Territory
BIQQ 1ZZ British Antarctic Territory
FIQQ 1ZZ Falkland Islands
GX11 1AA Gibraltar
PCRN 1ZZ Pitcairn Islands
SIQQ 1ZZ South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands
TKCA 1ZZ Turks and Caicos Islands[11]
BFPO 57 / BF1 2AT(Akrotiri)
BFPO 58 / BF1 2AU (Dhekelia)
Akrotiri and Dhekelia
List Bermuda
List Cayman Islands
List British Virgin Islands
List Montserrat

These were introduced to prevent mail being sent to the wrong place, e.g., for St Helena to St Helens, Merseyside[12] and Ascension Island to Asunción, Paraguay, and many on-line companies will not accept addresses lacking a postcode. Such mail is treated as international, not inland, so sufficient postage must be used.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s Address Management Guide (5th ed.). Royal Mail Group plc. March 2007. Archived from the original on 8 November 2012. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
  2. ^ a b c HMSO, The Inner London Letter Post, (1980)
  3. ^ Office for National Statistics (1999). The Official Yearbook of the United Kingdom (PDF) (2000 ed.). London: The Stationery Office. "UK Postal Areas", map opposite p. 5. ISBN 0-11-621098-2. Archived (PDF) from the original on 30 October 2012. Retrieved 22 October 2012.
  4. ^ a b "Postcodes in the UK - Jonathan Rawle's Website". jonathan.rawle.org. Archived from the original on 29 April 2018. Retrieved 29 April 2018.
  5. ^ "Quarterly Quality of Service Report to Postcomm – 2009/10 Quarter 1 Report" (PDF). Royal Mail. 2009-08-20. pp. 4&ndash, 8 (table 2). Retrieved 2009-11-06.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ Manger, Warren (26 August 2014). "40 facts about the postcode to mark 40th anniversary as vital part of daily life". mirror.co.uk. mirror.co.uk. Archived from the original on 16 March 2018. Retrieved 16 March 2018.
  7. ^ "History of the UK Postcode - Modern Origin". postcodearea.co.uk. postcodearea.co.uk. Archived from the original on 18 October 2017. Retrieved 16 March 2018.
  8. ^ Amazon Help [@AmazonHelp] (24 October 2016). "@MarkWickson This postcode is a non-geographic code used by us for returns carried by Royal Mail to our returns center Dunfermline, SCT. ^SW" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  9. ^ "Anguilla Has A Postal Code, AI-2640", The Anguillian, 12 October 2007
  10. ^ First postcode for remote UK isle Archived 2008-12-24 at the Wayback Machine.. BBC News. 7 August 2005.
  11. ^ Turks and Caicos Islands. Bureau International UPU.
  12. ^ Landmark birthday for postcode[permanent dead link]

External links[edit]

Postcode area boundaries:

KML is from Wikidata