I happened to read this in a Guardian consumer advice column yesterday:
What is going on at the government agencies? We have already reported on the shambles at the DVLA. Readers are also emailing to say that it is increasingly difficult to get information out of HMRC if you have a query that is not standard – and now this [long delays in new passport delivery] at the passport office.
It came after I have had endless problems myself over several months across several UK government services - HMRC, DWP, Companies House (Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy) - all services that have been good in the past - and we are about to renew a couple of family passports.
So what is going on with UK government services?