Letterboxes on an estate in Nuthall have been sealed for security reasons after Royal Mail lost the keys.
Royal Mail has sealed four post boxes on the Horsendale Estate, which has 950 houses on it, until the locks can be changed, according to the Nottingham Post.
Councillor Philip Owen, who represents Nuthall on Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “It’s massively inconvenient for residents.
“A number of them are elderly and it really isn’t practical for them to go to Bulwell or Kimberley to post a letter.
“It really smacks of incompetence to lose a set of keys and it isn’t the first time. A similar thing happened last year.”
Local residents have said they are concerned at the lack of information they have been given.
One of them rang Royal Mail, but said the details were “non-committal”.
Councillor Owen said: “I think they are afraid that the post boxes are going to close and disappear altogether.
“That’s what happened when the Post Office in Nottingham Road closed, the post box was removed.”
Nuthall Parish councillor Michael Spencer first heard about the problem on Thursday afternoon, after reading an email from a constituent from earlier in the day.
Coun Spencer said the woman who got in touch was “very annoyed” about the locked post box and he added: “A lady emailed me about them being locked. It seems like she relies on the service a lot.
“She got in touch with the post office who said that she had to send the letters through a post office but that is ridiculous.
“They’ve closed the post offices down in Nuthall so the nearest one is in Bulwell or Kimberley - which is about 1.5 miles away - so I thought that was stupid.
“I’ve been in touch with the post office and they said they have lost a set of keys and for security reasons have locked them. So we’ve just got to wait until they open them.
“I don’t send many letters out, just birthday cards and stuff like that - I normally use email - but I’ve been in touch with the local newsagent so they can tell their customers too.
“We shall just have to wait until next week. We have to give them the benefit of the doubt.”
A Royal Mail spokeswoman apologised for any inconvenience it may have caused.
She told the Post: “We can confirm that unfortunately some postboxes in Horsendale Estate, Nuthall, are currently out of service after the keys were misplaced.
“New keys are on order and we hope to reopen the boxes soon. In the meantime, customers can use other boxes in the area or drop of mail at any Post Office branch.”
The nearest Post Office branches are in Nuthall Road, Whitemoor, and Broxtowe Lane, Aspley.