How to find a UK postcode

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Every house, flat, maisonette and business in the UK has a postcode. This list of letters and numbers was introduced by the Royal Mail in the 20th Century to allow easy sorting of letters and parcels. The code, written in two halves, shows the address location.

The first half of the code is the Outward Code. The first letters of the Outward Code describe the main post office and the first numbers, the postcode district. The second half of the code is the Inward Code, with a number that defines a neighbourhood and letters that identify as many as 15 addresses.

To find a UK postcode you need to know at least part of the address.

Log in to the Royal Mail’s Online Postcode Finder. You do not need to register on the site unless you wish to find more than three postcodes.

Click on the "Find a Postcode" tab. This takes you to a page containing a form. Enter as much of the address as you know into the labelled search boxes.

Building Number: Do not use hyphens.

Building Name: Not all residencies or premises have names. You can leave this blank.

Street: Use the name of the street, such as Pond Lane or James Street. You can use abbreviations such as St for Street, or Gdns for Gardens.

Town. Enter the town or city name.

For best results, enter at least a street name, or a combination of street and town, building and street or building and town.

Click the “Find Postcode” button.

If your search is unsuccessful, scroll down the page to the “Need Help?” section. This section offers a series of links leading to guides that will help you solve problems, such as a guide for using a flat number to find a postcode. Access this guide by clicking on the “Search By Flat Number” link.

Should your search fail, click on “Get Help Searching” in the "Need Help?" section to find a set of frequently asked questions. Question 11, labelled “I can’t find the postcode or address I’m looking for”, includes an “Enquiry Form” link. Click here to enter your query and your email address. Royal Mail will undertake to “be in touch shortly” in response.

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