Its been an extremely painful process for my first UK passport. Its been 10wks for something that has a service standard of 6 weeks. I had issues with my photo (on a separate note have complained about the algorithms in the passport photo checker which discriminates against BAME people in detecting our skin tone).
Passport printed and sent 3:02pm on 21 May 2020
Application approved 5:52pm on 20 May 2020
New photo received 5:14pm on 5 May 2020
Photo rejected 7:56pm on 27 April 2020
Application being processed 9:20am on 19 March 2020
Documents received 8:49am on 18 March 2020
Application received 8:40am on 12 March 2020
Identity details received 8:39am on 12 March 2020
Email sent to person confirming your identity 4:24pm on 11 March 2020
Ask someone to confirm your identity 4:13pm on 11 March 2020
Application submitted 4:13pm on 11 March 2020
Even though it was sent to Liverpool, I was advised it was being processed by the Durham office after numerous emails as I was concerned that I was in the UK with no identification during a pandemic as HMPO also had my New Zealand passport. The communication from HMPO was very poor. Once I’ve received the passport in my hand, I will be making a complaint.