By Marcus Leach

With Christmas still over three months away Royal Mail are already preparing for the festive season by announcing they will hire 18,000 temporary staff to help with the rush of mail.

This number is still 2,000 less than last year, partly due to a decrease in postal volumes.

The temporary positions will see the Royal Mail covered between mid-November and early January.

The seasonal posts will boost Royal Mail's staff of 130,000 by 14%.

In regional terms the jobs will include 3,000 in the Midlands, 2,000 each in Scotland, the South West, Thames Valley, the North East and the South East, 1,500 each in the North West and East Anglia, 1,000 in Wales and 400 in Northern Ireland.

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