WINCHESTER (KSNT) – For six months now, townsfolk in Winchester have been forced to drive miles away to get their mail after the area’s only post office shut down.

The Winchester Post Office closed after city inspectors found mold in the building, and it wasn’t up to code, according to Mayor Virginia Winsor. After the property owner wouldn’t fix the issues, the city condemned the building. Everyone in the town then had to begin driving 10 miles to the Oskaloosa Post Office to pick up their mail.

According to federal law, the U.S. Postal Service is expected to “provide prompt, reliable, and efficient services to patrons in all areas and shall render postal services to all communities.” But for some of the 578 people living in Winchester, they say that is not the case.

“This has been a real imposition for the citizens here… and it should have never got to this point,” Winsor said.

A spokesperson for USPS said that buildings within one mile of the closed post office are all part of the group that has to travel to Oskaloosa for mail. Some people are still getting their mail through a delivery route from Oskaloosa, but it’s not clear how many.

When KSNT News asked USPS about how Winchester might get a new post office, the spokesperson said the organization is looking into another option for people to get their mail.

“We could possibly set up as I said before a cluster box operation right there in town, close to the offices there,” said Mark Inglett, USPS Strategic Communications Representative. “People in town could collect their mail there.”

The mayor said the cluster box would most likely be set up at the Winchester Public Library, but doesn’t know when that will happen.