sport

RM stamp out gold postbox talk

Lizzy Yarnold might have delivered Winter Olympic gold in Sochi - but her skeleton win was not so first-class for the Royal Mail.

The Royal Mail has confirmed Yarnold will not be granted the honour of a golden postbox in her home town of Sevenoaks, Kent, despite pulling out their paintbrushes for every one of the British gold medallists at London 2012.

The Royal Mail insists the tribute was a "one-off gesture" intended for British athletes who won gold in their home Olympics at London 2012.

In a statement, it said: "London 2012 was a unique occasion.

"The UK hosted the Games and our athletes performed extraordinarily well. Because of our status as the host nation, Royal Mail chose to mark the achievement of our athletes through gold post boxes as well as stamps.

"For the Winter Olympics 2014, Royal Mail will not be creating gold postboxes but we are exploring other ways of marking the achievements of our athletes, including creating a special postmark."

The Sevenoaks Chronicle has already begun an online campaign to persuade the Royal Mail to change its mind, and has launched the Twitter hashtag £paintitgoldforlizzy.

The newspapers editor, Gabriel Shepard, wrote: "Painting pillar boxes gold was an inspired move by Royal Mail and really captured the public's imagination.

"Refusing to do the same for Lizzy seems badly out of touch and I urge Royal Mail to reconsider their decision."

The Chronicle's campaign is already gaining friends in high places.

Darryl Seibel, director of communications for the British Olympic Association, said: "I should think somewhere a bucket of gold paint and a paintbrush can be found, so that when Lizzy's mail arrives it has an appropriately golden glow."