ROYAL Mail is employing temporary staff to address the postal delivery issues in Andover after facing nearly two months of delays.

The delays have caused frustration among residents and raised concerns about the impact on their daily lives, including missed medical appointments, delayed communications, and mounting inconvenience.

In response to the ongoing disruptions, Anthony Thorne, the regional operations director for South Central at Royal Mail, expressed his apologies to the affected residents.

Mr Thorne acknowledged that while the majority of residents and businesses in Andover and the surrounding area “were receiving their mail as usual”, there had been inconsistencies leading to delays for some customers.

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He said: “We are aware that service levels have not been consistently good for all local residents and our top priority is restoring service levels to where our customers expect them to be.

“Like many businesses, we have had issues with filling vacancies and some long-term sick absences.”

To address the issue promptly, the postal service has recruited temporary staff to fill the gaps caused by vacancies and absenteeism.

The addition of these temporary workers is expected to alleviate the delays and help maintain a smoother mail delivery process.

Mr Thorne said: “We have been actively recruiting to fill these gaps and have brought in additional temporary workers to help.   

“Every effort is being made to keep delays to a minimum. Post continues to be delivered, and those who have mail and do not receive it on the day they expect will be prioritised the next working day. 

“I am very grateful to local customers for their patience and understanding.”

Many Andover residents had previously raised concerns about the ongoing postal delays in the town.

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Terry Whenman shared his frustration and said: "The postal service in Andover is increasingly not a service at all. Deliveries are, at best, intermittent, with post arriving late or not at all.

“I personally have not received any mail for almost two weeks, and then when I do receive it, it's up to a dozen pieces of mail in one hit, usually on a Thursday.”

Ray Phillips, a local business owner, added: "One of the businesses, on the same plot as mine, was told that we are all no longer on a dedicated route and we'll see post when we see it.

“In the last two weeks or so, my business has only had two deliveries in the last seven working days, the second of which only brought in one letter for us which is below average, making me think some might have been lost as it mounts up in the meantime.”