Friday, October 27, 2006

Fit for purpose

I was looking for my passport a couple of weeks ago, in preparation for a trip to Germany, and made the unwelcome discovery that I had lost it. I was not looking forward to applying for a replacement because I don’t like filling in forms at the best of times and I dimly remembered the pictures of people queuing for ages at offices and it all taking ages. Given that the passport service is run by a government department which is currently not fit for purpose, I didn’t imagine that things would be any better now than they were then.

I went to look on the website, which had lots of information about different kinds of forms which I didn’t want, and a phone number which you could call to make an appointment if you need to renew your passport quickly. I called up, got an appointment for two days later, filled in the two page form, got the photo signed, handed it all over and got my new passport less than a week later.

I don’t know if I was just lucky, but this does seem to be a public service which used to be rubbish and has now been sorted out, and I find rather encouraging.


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