'Disgraceful': MP has had more complaints about passports in last four weeks than he's had in the previous four years

This Is Lancashire: Stephen Kruup who has had problems getting a passport Stephen Kruup who has had problems getting a passport

HOLIDAY makers have been inundating Bolton MPs with concerns over passport delays.

Bolton North East MP David Crausby has criticised the Passport Office for “huge delays” processing people’s applications, putting holiday plans at risk.

Applications are at a 12-year high, and in the first five months this year the office has had to deal with 3.28 million applications — an increase of 330,000 compared with the same period in 2013.

The centre has now employed extra staff, working seven days a week, to sift through the backlog, but Mr Crausby said the current situation is unacceptable.

Mr Crausby said: “I have had more complaints about the passports office in the last four weeks than I’ve had in the previous four years, it’s disgraceful.

“I’ve had constituents worried sick that they might miss their holidays.”

Among the residents affected is Stephen Kruup, who has waited more than five weeks for his first passport so he can travel to Spain.

The Tonge Moor resident was also baffled to receive a letter from the Passport Office inviting him to an interview — but when he rang to confirm, he says he was told the letter should never have been sent.

Mr Kruup, aged 44, said: “It’s absolutely pathetic. I was looking to go away with my mates in two weeks, it would be my first time going away.

“When I rang them they said the reference number on the letter doesn’t even exist.”

Breightmet midwife Nicola Ainsworth was travelling to Portugal for a holiday and was told there was “no chance” of getting her passport back within three weeks.

But after contacting Mr Crausby’s office, officials fast-tracked the application.

Ms Ainsworth, aged 35, said: “I felt awful, I felt sick I was so worried. I had to pay £61 to upgrade the application but otherwise I would have lost the holiday.

“I got my passport back two days before the holiday.”

Paul Pugh, chief executive of the Passport Office, said: “We recognise that striving to meet our customers’ expectations is vital even during busy periods, which is why we have more than 200 additional staff who have moved from back office roles to front line operations and 650 extra staff on our customer helpline.

“We are operating seven days a week, with our couriers delivering passports within 24 hours of being produced.”

Comments (7)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

8:14am Fri 13 Jun 14

MrUpton says...

Oh wait this never happened under Labours rule did it?

Anyone remember the I.T scandal when none of their computers worked .
LOL
Oh wait this never happened under Labours rule did it? Anyone remember the I.T scandal when none of their computers worked . LOL MrUpton
  • Score: -11

8:15am Fri 13 Jun 14

MrUpton says...

The lesson here is don't book a holiday until you have a passport IN YOU HAND that's going to be valid when you actually travel.

Surely
The lesson here is don't book a holiday until you have a passport IN YOU HAND that's going to be valid when you actually travel. Surely MrUpton
  • Score: -1

8:43am Fri 13 Jun 14

TheOneTrueWord says...

Why do people apply for passports so late in the day i.e. before they go on holiday! My passport expired in March this year, I sent off for my new one in January and got it back in 10 days!

If people are so stupid to apply during the busiest times of the year for a passport then they can expect delays… if they stupidly plan a holiday without having the correct passport then they are even more stupid!
Why do people apply for passports so late in the day i.e. before they go on holiday! My passport expired in March this year, I sent off for my new one in January and got it back in 10 days! If people are so stupid to apply during the busiest times of the year for a passport then they can expect delays… if they stupidly plan a holiday without having the correct passport then they are even more stupid! TheOneTrueWord
  • Score: 11

8:58am Fri 13 Jun 14

adeleandnick2012 says...

I will be sending off for my baby's first passport end of this month don't go away till end of November so I knw it get bk in time
I will be sending off for my baby's first passport end of this month don't go away till end of November so I knw it get bk in time adeleandnick2012
  • Score: 9

11:22am Fri 13 Jun 14

Diamonintherough says...

When i applied for mine a few years ago it clearly stated if you apply during holidays season then expect at LEAST 6 weeks
When i applied for mine a few years ago it clearly stated if you apply during holidays season then expect at LEAST 6 weeks Diamonintherough
  • Score: 7

12:02pm Fri 13 Jun 14

Peter 1958 says...

How come there is not the same outcry of public anger,at the even longer delays for ESA or PIP.
The passport fiasco is one made entirely by the home secretary,after all it was her that closed overseas passport offices and cut 10% of the staff as well.
Yet another government made disaster that will be denied and blamed on others.
Its time "NON OF THE ABOVE" was put on all ballot papers.
Just to prove to them that they are not up to the job.
How come there is not the same outcry of public anger,at the even longer delays for ESA or PIP. The passport fiasco is one made entirely by the home secretary,after all it was her that closed overseas passport offices and cut 10% of the staff as well. Yet another government made disaster that will be denied and blamed on others. Its time "NON OF THE ABOVE" was put on all ballot papers. Just to prove to them that they are not up to the job. Peter 1958
  • Score: 4

9:17am Mon 16 Jun 14

Jim271 says...

You can buy British passports from the individuals that loiter around the junction of Halliwell Road and Brownlow Way near the public phone box.
You can buy British passports from the individuals that loiter around the junction of Halliwell Road and Brownlow Way near the public phone box. Jim271
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree