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fred
6th June 2014, 15:01
Ive fired off a few emails to the British consul using emails in the R.P regarding questions about expired passports etc.
All I get in reply is the usual B.S with them saying thank you for the email..blah bla and they will respond within 24 hours!!
Of course..They never do.
So!! I was wondering..How can I complain as a Brit citizen and who to about the abysmal services that we receive abroad these days ??
Its like..If its not a fee driven service,they couldn't give a .... about us!! In our case,it IS a fee driven service and they still dont give a ....!!!!!
The only thing these consuls seem interested in is their Champagne lifestyle and pointless and very posh meetings etc..
Any ideas?? Email addresses,Phone numbers? or anybody else in that ivory tower that I can shout at?
Cheers,
Fred.

Dedworth
6th June 2014, 15:27
Ive fired off a few emails to the British consul using emails in the R.P regarding questions about expired passports etc.
All I get in reply is the usual B.S with them saying thank you for the email..blah bla and they will respond within 24 hours!!
Of course..They never do.
So!! I was wondering..How can I complain as a Brit citizen and who to about the abysmal services that we receive abroad these days ??
Its like..If its not a fee driven service,they couldn't give a .... about us!! In our case,it IS a fee driven service and they still dont give a ....!!!!!
The only thing these consuls seem interested in is their Champagne lifestyle and pointless and very posh meetings etc..
Any ideas?? Email addresses,Phone numbers? or anybody else in that ivory tower that I can shout at?
Cheers,
Fred.

I'd start at the top Fred and put on the email that any replies or lack of will be reposted / reported on the internet

haguew@parliament.uk , william.hague.mp@parliament.uk

fred
6th June 2014, 15:35
I'd start at the top Fred and put on the email that any replies or lack of will be reposted / reported on the internet

haguew@parliament.uk , william.hague.mp@parliament.uk

Thanks for the links DEd... I`ll fire some off to them ..... with the original emails attached..
If I get another 24 hour BS response,I`ll post it here..
Cheers,
Fred.

Dedworth
6th June 2014, 15:36
:xxgrinning--00xx3:

grahamw48
6th June 2014, 15:37
My big brother has been a British Consul, amongst other posts, at several different Embassies.

I think you'd be best advised to contact 'head office' at FCO London.

He's a department head there now, but unfortunately, not on the Consular side.

There are SOME good guys there. :biggrin:

fred
6th June 2014, 15:51
As a warning to others.. If you ever come over here to live and your passport expires,or that of your wife or kids...You cannot go to Manila any longer,pop into a British embassy and get youtself a new passport!!
You have to download the forms,have em printed,fill them in and send ALL your requirements DIRECTLY to the UK and include ORIGINALS of important documents like birth certificates ect.. They DO NOT accept copies of any kind.
My kids passports applications require a Brit Policeman or other recognized professional to countersign their application. A Filipino judge for example will not do.
If the application is lost somewhere,then so are our original birth certificates et all..
Something to think about for those wishing to move long term abroad.
The British Embassy in Manila and its so called "Consuls" are only here for ONE reason these days..
To receive money from foreign nationals and collect visa fees,or other revenue schemes.
The days when they were here to represent British citizens are long gone!!

fred
6th June 2014, 15:54
My big brother has been a British Consul, amongst other posts, at several different Embassies.

I think you'd be best advised to contact 'head office' at FCO London.

He's a department head there now, but unfortunately, not on the Consular side.

There are SOME good guys there. :biggrin:

I`d appreciate his number if you think he could help answer my very simple questions Graham.. PM me if you think he could do that or at least if he could put me on to someone that could!! Thanks.
Fred.

Edit..
BTW.. If that is in anyway awkward for you to do..Then forget about it..I completely understand!!

grahamw48
6th June 2014, 16:39
Sorry Fred. It WOULD be awkward. :wink:

Anyway, good luck with finding the right 'earpiece'.

I think you could just get the number from their switchboard operator...if not available online ? :smile:

fred
6th June 2014, 17:25
No worries Graham..
I`ve just sent 2 off to the email links Ded gave..
Be interesting to see if I at least get a response!
Nightmare!!:icon_lol:

fred
6th June 2014, 17:34
Ohhh!! I am honoured!!
I got a "in due course" reply this time.:xxgrinning--00xx3:


[cid:image001.png@01CDFFA6.033A0340]
William Hague MP
Member of Parliament for Richmond (Yorks)
House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA


Thank you very much for your email. It is important to me to ensure that you receive a reply as soon as possible.

If your email concerns my work as Secretary of State for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, this will be forwarded to the appropriate desk at the FCO who will reply in due course. Please consider this response an acknowledgement of your email.

If you are applying for a visa to live, work, or travel in the UK, please direct your enquiry to the UK Border Agency. You can find their details here: http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/

As Parliamentary rules prevent an MP dealing with enquiries from another MP’s constituency please check to ensure you are a constituent of Richmond using this website: http://findyourmp.parliament.uk/.

If you are one of my constituents, please ensure you have included your full name and address. If you have not, please resend your email with this information.

Thank you for taking the time to contact me.

fred
6th June 2014, 17:38
Problem is Dedworth... I`m not one of his constituents.. He may not be obliged to reply.:cwm24:

fred
6th June 2014, 17:51
Same email sent to Mark Simmonds MP.

Dear Mr Simmonds.


I have been living in the Philippines for the last 7 years with my wife and two Children.
My wife and two children are all British citizens but their passports have been expired for a while now.
We did think about them being renewed at the British embassy in Manila but we have since been advised that the embassy no longer issues or renews British passports there anymore. My first question is,what is it that they do there now except assist British citizens abroad?
I have sent many emails to the British consulate in Manila (CONS.Manila@fco.gov.uk) with my questions about the application form but until now,apart from an email notice that says they will reply in 24 hours,we have heard nothing for 3 months!!
I am bitterly disappointed because they have not had the courtesy to reply.
This is a segment of one of the automated replies that I have received.


Dear Sir / Madam

Thank you for your e-mail addressed to the Consular Section of the British Embassy Manila.


We are here to offer consular assistance to British Nationals travelling and/or residing in the Philippines. We will contact you by e-mail or phone within one (1) working day if you need urgent consular assistance and within five (5) working days if it is less pressing. Meanwhile, you may read through our Support for British National leaflet available from our website:


What concerns me are some of the requirements that the application asks me for.
First of all,it asks me to send my children`s original birth certificates.
As you may or may not appreciate,these original certs. are very precious to us whilst living abroad. If they are lost via courier for example they would be very difficult/impossible for us to replace here. I am also very nervous about sending their original expired passports without a British Consul at least here signing and acknowledging that they were sent with the application.
My second concern is that the children were below 18 years old when their passports expired. The requirement notes in the application form say that we need to have the document counter signed by a British national such as a British Police officer or a British serving judge etc that has known them for 3 years at least.
Although I can understand why this may be required,how can we complete the form if we feel there is no one here to countersign the children s application for us.
I am extremely disappointed that the British embassy in Manila can no longer assist us or that the British Consul cannot obviously be bothered to reply to me and this makes us feel extremely vulnerable whilst we continue to live here without valid British passports.
I am a member of a very largely populated British/Filipino internet based forum of around 20,000 members. It was the membership there that suggested that I write to you.


I will await your reply and hope that someone can assist me.


Thank you.

Fred.

grahamw48
6th June 2014, 18:03
Good letter Fred.

Hopefully it will wake somebody up long enough to pay you some attention. :NoNo:

joebloggs
6th June 2014, 18:20
many years ago, after months of waiting for the embassy to process my misses visa, and getting replies from people who worked there but then had gone on holiday for weeks or on courses, i emailed every manager at the embassy and told them i was :censored: with their service, the next day i got a copy of an email from one manager to another manager, saying it looks like i wasn't having much luck with the embassy and could he sort it out, later that day my misses got a call saying her visa and passport were ready :wink:

grahamw48
6th June 2014, 18:47
It shouldn't do, but shouting loudest works.

I know that from my own experience as a Civil Servant. :cwm25:

jonnijon
7th June 2014, 00:44
Did I not read a while ago, renewing passports is now done at the consul in Hong kong? This was about 2 years ago.

fred
12th June 2014, 01:48
1 working day they said.
Not a sausage!
I`ll fire off the email 5 more times to Hague and Simmonds and if they still dont reply I might need some more suggestion.
The passport website does`nt seem to have a CONTACT US link.
Waste of taxpayer resources?

Terpe
12th June 2014, 08:36
1 working day they said.
Not a sausage!
I`ll fire off the email 5 more times to Hague and Simmonds and if they still dont reply I might need some more suggestion.
The passport website does`nt seem to have a CONTACT US link.
Waste of taxpayer resources?

There's seems to be some problems with the UK passport office including alledged massive backlogs.
Just heard on BBC news that the major backlogs are with overseas renewals.
Talk of 'relaxing' security checks......but the government ministers have denied this will happen.

Having overseas passport renewals processed in UK was not well thought out.....it seems.
The word 'chaotic' has been used.

Terpe
12th June 2014, 08:46
Ministers intervene to prevent relaxation of checks at Passport Office

http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Guardian/Pix/pictures/2014/6/12/1402527664744/passport-office-011.jpg

Ministers were forced to intervene in the working of the chaotic Passport Office after the Guardian revealed that managers had ordered staff to relax security checks on applicants for British passports from abroad in an effort to reduce a backlog of at least 30,000 applications.

A briefing note sent to staff on Monday told Passport Office workers to drop checks on countersignatories, as well as requirements for evidence of addresses and letters of confirmation from employers and accountants.

An hour after the leaked document was published on the Guardian's website on Wednesday night, the Home Office issued a terse statement saying that ministers had no knowledge of the instructions and had ordered managers at the Passport Office to withdraw it immediately.

The intervention will be an acute embarrassment to the home secretary, Theresa May, who has until now tried to maintain that she has been on top of the situation within the Passport Office.

On Wednesday, David Cameron blamed the confusion on the fact that the Passport Office was facing 300,000 more applications than usual and told the Commons: "The Home Office has been on this from the very start."

The developments will also increase pressure on Paul Pugh, the interim head of the Office, who has until now maintained that there is no "backlog" of cases.

The Passport Office was on Wednesday given 100 more staff by the Home Office in an effort to clear its backlog of applications, which are causing people to delay or miss holidays unless they pay 55 to have their cases fast-tracked.

But the briefing note revealed that behind the scenes, processes are also being transformed to cut the delays. It says the changes are required to achieve the right balance between "customer service, public protection and organisational requirements", and that "these changes are being published now in light of the need to speed up turnaround times".

The briefing note, written by the Passport Office's policy team and entitled Overseas Policy and Procedure Changes, begins by listing a number of policy changes and informs staff that they can now relax checks if an applicant from abroad asks for a passport to be sent to an alternative address.

In these cases, evidence of a link to that address will no longer be mandatory and the applicant will no longer have to sign a disclaimer form. The document states: "It has been agreed that, where an applicant provides an alternative address, a separate 'disclaimer' and evidence of a link to that address will no longer be mandatory if there are no other concerns or fraud indicators."

Staff sources claim the change could aid a fraudster who has applied for a document. Checks on countersignatories – a person of good standing or in a recognised profession who vouches for an applicant – have also been relaxed. The note says that a photocopy or scan of national ID cards from many European countries or Hong Kong will now be allowed as proof of a countersignatory's identity.

"On a discretionary basis, a photocopy or emailed scan of a countersignatory's current valid national identity card can be accepted instead of a passport copy, if the card is issued from one of the countries listed below to one of their nationals," the document says.

According to the note, if an applicant is seeking a second passport – which many frequent flyers use so that they can travel on one document whilst applying for entry with another – staff no longer need to seek a letter confirming their status from an employer or accountant.

"For an application for a first additional passport where the applicant has provided their passport, the examiner can use their discretion to not seek a letter of confirmation from an employer where other information indicates that the applicant is eligible for an additional passport," it says.

Previously, the Passport Office has strictly enforced a requirement for a letter of confirmation from an employer or accountant. Sources say the change raises the possibility of identity theft because it could allow a fraudster who has stolen a UK passport to apply for a second.

Speaking before ministers intervened, Yvette Cooper, the shadow home secretary, said the briefing showed the government was in denial about the state of the crisis and had been reduced to scaling back vital checks. "This is seriously chaotic … If this is what the prime minister meant by getting a grip on the situation, he needs to think again," she said. Mark Serwotka, head of the PCS union, which represents many Passport Office staff, said: "The Home Office now has some very serious questions to answer about whether security is being compromised and whether passports could be more easily obtained by criminals."

The Home Office last year cut several passport offices within foreign embassies at an annual saving of 20m and moved work to centres in Liverpool, Durham and Belfast. The decision was also intended to boost security, as it was considered too risky to send blank passport books abroad.

Downing Street confirmed that hundreds of extra staff had been deployed to deal with the backlog and offices would open seven days a week from 7am until midnight, after leaked photographs showed boxes of applications piling up in temporary storage in the Liverpool office.

Last week the Guardian disclosed that a quarter of staff employed to detect fraud, as well as others who usually interview suspect applicants, had been asked to process the delayed applications.

Ed Miliband told the Commons on Wednesday that the problem had been caused by cuts and a failure by May to keep watch as she was bickering with the education secretary, Michael Gove. "Tens of thousands of people are finding their holidays are being cancelled because they are not actually getting a passport," he said.

A Home Office spokesman said: "Ministers were unaware of this document and have instructed Her Majesty's Passport Office to withdraw it immediately."

Source (http://www.theguardian.com/politics/2014/jun/12/ministers-intervene-to-prevent-relaxation-of-rules-in-passport-office)

Terpe
12th June 2014, 08:46
Fred, I take it you've seen the Passport advice and complaints (https://www.gov.uk/passport-advice-line) webpage?

And this Complaints procedure (https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-passport-office/about/complaints-procedure) webpage

Dedworth
12th June 2014, 10:03
I wonder if workshy public servant scousers throwing sickdays has any bearing on this shambles :biggrin:

fred
12th June 2014, 11:42
Fred, I take it you've seen the Passport advice and complaints (https://www.gov.uk/passport-advice-line) webpage?

And this Complaints procedure (https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-passport-office/about/complaints-procedure) webpage

Thanks Peter.. Sent!

Passport enquiries


https://eforms.homeoffice.gov.uk/outreach/spacer.ofif






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fred
12th June 2014, 11:46
If we had to leave urgently (to wherever) and thats a big if.. The only way I can see of doing it is by us all walking into the British embassy in Manila and paying for emergency passports.
Pay,pay pay!!:omg:

fred
12th June 2014, 11:56
Families held to ransom over passport chaos: As backlog hits 500,000, holidaymakers are told to pay 55 extra or risk losing their summer break

Exclusive picture reveals extraordinary backlog of applications in one office
Image released by whistleblower hours after May rubbished backlog fears
Officials offer to fast-track documents for 55.50 on top of 72.50 fee
Extra cost for a family of four would amount to 222
Labour accuse Home Secretary of complacency over passport woes
May insists there is no crisis at Passport Office despite complaints
Home Office re-deploys 200 staff members to frontline operations
But MPs say there is a 'backlog of half a million cases' with growing delays



Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2654195/May-accused-incredible-complacency-holiday-crisis-MPs-say-families-state-panic-passport-delays.html#ixzz34QBX91vh
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http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2654195/May-accused-incredible-complacency-holiday-crisis-MPs-say-families-state-panic-passport-delays.html

Dedworth
12th June 2014, 12:09
Its a joke.

I used to deal with a useless idiot who was quite senior in DEFRA, some years ago he moved to the passport office on an inflated salary, I knew then they were a shower

SimonH
12th June 2014, 12:37
I think part of the problem lies with the fact that overseas passport applications used to be processed in Germany, but are now done in London.

fred
12th June 2014, 13:01
I think part of the problem lies with the fact that overseas passport applications used to be processed in Germany, but are now done in London.

I lost my passport 2 years after arrival.. I made an appointment with Brit consul in Cebu,filled in form,paid in cash and had the passport sent to me via Brit embassy 2 weeks later..
Wasn't that easy!!
WTF went wrong since then??:mad:

raynaputi
12th June 2014, 13:43
Just watching BBC news. Theresa May just announced below:

"People renewing their UK passports from overseas will be given a 12 month extension to their existing passport."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-27806441

fred
12th June 2014, 14:21
Just watching BBC news. Theresa May just announced below:

"People renewing their UK passports from overseas will be given a 12 month extension to their existing passport."

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-27806441

Thanks Rayna.. Not much good to us as the kids PP`s are 24 months expired!

Terpe
15th June 2014, 10:25
And there's more .........

https://www.gov.uk/overseas-passports (https://www.gov.uk/overseas-passports)



If you’re renewing an existing British passport you can apply for it to be extended for 12 months. You won’t be charged any extra fees.

To apply, phone your local British Embassy, Consulate or High Commission and select the ‘Consular Services’ option. Appointments can be made from Monday 16 June.

fred
15th June 2014, 18:01
Thanks Peter.. Sent!

Passport enquiries




https://eforms.homeoffice.gov.uk/outreach/spacer.ofif






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