Can anyone please help? Nightmare old application + Fast track.

Home Forums General Passport Application Discussion Can anyone please help? Nightmare old application + Fast track.

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    I don’t know if anyone can help or offer advice but I’m on the verge of tears. To be honest I’ve cried already!

    Pre warning, long post.

    We’re going away on the 17th of April. I checked my passport and realised this was due to expire in July so paid for a standard renewal on the 14th of March. Silly now I know, however at the time the waiting times were only 3 weeks.

    Total cost so far £75 + £6 signed for next day delivery of my old passport to corby/peterborough.

    I rang up to check the progress on the 25th of March as they’d signed for the passport on the 16th and I’d had no updates. I was advised the timeframe now was 10 weeks, obviously not good enough.

    The lady on the phone asked if my passport was damaged, I advised no as I had gone through the checklist on their site prior to paying the £75. All the pages were intact, however the front cover was slightly worn but there was nothing to suggest this was actually classed as damage. When I advised her of this she said this significantly changes things, when we receive your documents (they were received 9 days prior) these would not be accepted as they are damaged and in order to get a passport on time now you must apply for a fast track..

    She advised me to declare the passport as lost, which I did. Write a letter asking to withdraw the original renewal and send this off signed for immediately, book a fast track appointment as soon as possible, and take a copy of the withdrawal letter, proof of postage of this letter, a lost passport reference number, a NEW application, and two photos one signed fort to my appointment and that my previous application would be withdrawn in person and the new one would be processed immediately, guaranteed for 7 days.

    (The second I paid for the fast track my documents were miraculously received on their system)

    Total cost so far now;

    £75 for old application
    £6 for signed for delivery of old passport
    £3 for signed for delivery of withdrawal letter received the 26th of March
    £8 for new passport photos
    £147 for a fast track appointment.
    £5 parking for FT.

    Cue my appointment on the 30th at 9am at Peterborough. As soon as I got there I was advised I shouldn’t of declared the “damaged” passport as lost as it wasn’t lost, despite being told to. I queried whether a faded cover was actually even classed as damaged but it was ignored. She sat in silence. She took all my documents spent ages typing and then said my old application is still live and simply won’t be withdrawn until the letter is manually attached to my application. I told her this is why I’ve brought a copy of the letter so you can do it immediately. “Thats not how this works” (fyi about 10 people on twitter have done this and their applications have been withdrawn there and then, a refund issued and their fast tracks processed immediately). When I asked how long my FT would take, she shrugged and said usually 7 days but in your case longer. You can go now. And she stood up and simply walked off.

    I left in floods of tears and immediately rang the advice line who agreed the information she gave me was wrong, I was due a refund, and my FT should of been approved. They were going to get someone to contact me back. A lovely chap rang back I explained the situation and he agreed her advice was incorrect. Told me to ignore everything she said and checked both applications. The fast track was now on the system so I should receive that by the 6th but he advised to ring Monday if I haven’t had a tracking number, and he checked that she did infact leave a note on my old application at 9.05 to cancel this and not to worry about my old application any further. He passed the information onto complaints to get someone to contact me regarding a refund.

    Todays latest drama is I received a text to say my old application which should be “cancelled” is now being processed. I rang to query this and again had to explain the whole situation. The lady confirmed the process of taking a letter to a FT appointment for immediate withdrawal was correct. She also advised me my passport would not of been classes as damaged as faded front covers have no impact. Upon checking my old application she confirmed despite me asking for it to be cancelled it was now being processed with a NEW application date of the 30th of March. My fast track date! And that this would significantly delay things. I explained I cancelled this and paid an additional £147 to FT a new application and she agreed that it seems my old one hasn’t been cancelled and I will instead have to wait for this one.

    Furiously I agreed to wait 48 hours for a callback from resolutions.

    Tonight I have received another update. They are sending me a letter as there’s been a problem with my OLD SUPPOSEDLY ANCELLED APPLICATION. and that I am not to contact them further until I receive the letter. This has been sent at 9.08pm on the 1st of April.

    I’m due to fly in 16 days.

    So far I have paid over £220 in passport fees alone excluding postage fees etc.

    I have spoken to tons of people on twitter who in the same situation as me was given the same advice, and their old applications withdrawn there and then and a new passport received in 6 days.

    However one guy did the same as me, but instead they randomly cancelled his fast track application, didnt bother to tell him and processed his original application instead. No refunds nothing. Luckily he will receive this in time as his old application was months prior to mine and its been printed today.

    If they process my old one now there’s no chance I’ll receive it in time, especially now there’s a supposed problem.


    Does anyone have any advice or guidance. I could cry. I have cried. I’m so fed up. Their call handlers lie down the phone, or tell you incorrect advice. Their hold times are ridiculous, over 2 hours at a time and the people who deal with your application in person are infact no better.

    I’ve had no calls from complaints or resolutions.

    I’m not only going to be down a holiday but also £250 out of pocket with no passport due to their terrible advice.

    If this is posted in the incorrect place i apologise, thankyou if you made it this far! :'(


    bubsxo, I am so sorry to read this. Such a stressful situation. I too found that information provided by call handlers was incorrect. I don’t think it is their fault though. I think the system is at fault. I too had a really stressful time. I have started a government petition for change. Please do sign it to help everyone on this forum. I really hope that you situation is sorted out for you. I am so sorry.

    Reform UK passport application tracking and options to fast-track applications
    We want the Government to:
    1. Improve passport tracking information so accurate, detailed and real-time information is available online for all passport applications.
    2. Allow the option to fast-track any passport application (for a fee) for any reason.

    More details
    My recent experience of passport renewals has highlighted the need for the passport application system, and the tracking information provided to customers throughout the application process, to be overhauled.

    There is a lack of communication in the system, which can cause a lot of stress. In addition, there is a lack of flexibility in the system for existing applications.


    Bubsxo, I think you and my partner had the same agent at the Peterborough office. He went for his appointment Tuesday with his withdrawal letter his completed application and his photos only to be told his online application hadnt been cancelled and there was nothing that could be done for him.
    We were specifically told by the chat agent that all we needed to do was take a signed letter requesting the withdrawal of his online application and the office would accept that.
    So someone here is wrong and given so many other people have followed suit successfully my guess is its the office agent in Peterborough.
    We have now accepted that he will not join me and my 4 year old daughter on holiday on the 18th April.
    I did save the chat and will be pursuing a complaint to get a refund. The system is an absolute mess and the degree of incompetence is unbelievable.

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