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Last Updated:  Monday, 7 April, 2003, 10:47 GMT 11:47 UK
Island delight as post returns
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Post will be delivered across a sandbar
A remote island community is to receive post again for the first time since the service was suspended amid safety fears.

Royal Mail bosses had stopped deliveries to the island of Oronsay in February.

Health and safety officials were concerned deliveries were being made across a sandbank in the dark because of the time mail arrived on the adjoining island of Colonsay.

The tiny Inner Hebridean island of Oronsay has a population of only eight people.

It is connected to its larger neighbour Colonsay by a sandy strait, which can be walked across for three hours at low tide.

I am glad that common sense has prevailed and that the people of Oronsay can once again enjoy the postal service to which they are accustomed
Ian Gillies
Argyll and Bute Council
Mail will now go to Oronsay the day after it arrives on Colonsay, as the ferry reaches the latter by late afternoon.

The first delivery was due to be made at about 1540 GMT on Monday, after post arrived on Colonsay on Sunday.

Royal Mail area manager Alan Gairns said deliveries would not be attempted if the the weather or tide conditions were judged unsafe.

He added: "We don't take lightly a decision to suspend a delivery service but in this case we had to put the safety of our staff first.

"We now propose mail only being delivered in daylight hours at a time that allows a safe passage across the strand at low tide."

Ian Gillies, the island's spokesman for Argyll and Bute Council, said Oronsay's population of eight were "delighted" the service had resumed.

"I am glad that common sense has prevailed and that the people of Oronsay can once again enjoy the postal service to which they are accustomed."




SEE ALSO:
Cash for rural post offices
02 Dec 02  |  Scotland
Rural fears over post plans
31 Jan 02  |  Scotland


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