BASILDON has been put on a postal “blacklist” as the Royal Mail battles Covid outbreaks among staff.

The postal service has been hit with staff shortages across the country due to workers testing positive and others self isolating.

Basildon has been included on a “blacklist” of 28 areas across the UK that have not been receiving regular post.

Vicky Wright, from Basildon, said her 69-year-old mum Christine, who had breast cancer ten years ago, has missed tests at Southend Hospital because the letter arrived late.

The 48-year-old, said: “Her mammogram came back inconclusive. She only has one every three years. She was meant to have an appointment on the 28th, but the letter only came through the week after.

“Mum then went back for the scans on Monday, the hospital were so angry the letter was so late.

“We’re going back next week, and they’ve told her to bring a family member with her. It’s not looking good.

“The NHS are trying their best, but the Royal Mail aren’t helping the situation.”

Sarah Hallpike, commenting on the Echo Facebook page, added: “We are still waiting on parcels that were sent by family for Christmas, we have no idea when we will receive them, they should have been here by the 21st December.

“I also posted Christmas cards on the 16th of December and they haven’t been received.”

The Royal Mail has now apologised for a lack of deliveries after its workforce has been hit with Covid cases and self-isolating staff.

A spokesman from Royal Mail, said: “In common with most organisations, we have a number of employees who are self-isolating in line with official regulations. This has a direct impact on our staffing levels. Deliveries are being made every day and we are working hard to deliver as normal service as we can, drawing in extra resource where possible.

“Despite our best endeavours, some areas of the country may experience a temporary reduction in service levels due to unavoidable staff absences and essential social distancing measures.

“In such cases, we always work hard to get back to providing a normal service.”