INNERLEITHEN'S Community Council has branded the Post Office's weekly mobile service as 'totally unacceptable' after the van failed to show up for residents.

Members reconvened at the town's Council Chambers on Leithen Road on Monday night, following a summer break.

Among the matters up for discussion, problems were raised with the weekly mobile service in the town, which operates every Friday morning between 9.30am and 1pm.

The once-a-week service, operated by the postmaster from Denholm Post Office, enables customers to send mail, collect benefits in cash, purchase euros and buy National Express tickets.

Chairman Marshall Douglas reported that the vehicle. which parks outside Innerleithen Parish Church, on Leithen Road, was a no-show for locals.

He said: "A local resident reported that the van was absent on July 7. He had been relying on it to transact some urgent business. He joins a number of senior citizens who reported that they needed the service that day.

"This situation is deplorable and totally unacceptable. The post box on the bridge by the Vale Club is regularly overfull before being emptied, and there is an absence of wide-mouthed post boxes to accept larger items in the town."

He added: "Sadly, there has been no progress made on identifying a local business willing to host the Post Office as yet."

"The community council will write to the Post Office and request that a representative should come to the October or November meeting to discuss the way forward."

In February, the Peeblesshire News reported that the concession within the Daymart Newsagents on the town's High Street had closed, sparking a six-week consultation by the Post Office on proposals to operate a one-day mobile service in the town.

The consultation was met with backlash from local politicians and residents, who set up a petition to restore full Post Office services in Innerleithen and appeal for local businesses to come forward to take on a Post Office concession within their stores.

A Post Office spokesperson said: "The Post Office apologises to customers for any inconvenience caused by a temporary lapse in the Outreach Mobile service in Innerleithen on July 7. 

"This was due to a mechanical failure with the mobile van. We know how important Post Office services are to people in Innerleithen and we are pleased to confirm that the fault was rectified and the service is operating as normal."