MAIL delivery was disrupted in Bridgwater when postal workers walked out after a row over the dismissal of a colleague.

About 80 workers at the Bridgwater Royal Mail depot in Friarn Street staged an unballoted strike on Friday which lasted all day and which hit mail delivery services in the TA5, TA6 and TA7 postcode areas.

Dave Chapple, Communications Workers’ Union representative, told the Mercury: “A young woman has been dismissed for sick absence and it was totally unfair. It is the worst managerial decision in all my 35 years as a postman.

“Eighty per cent of the staff are out on unofficial strike because we just felt so strongly about it. We are waiting for somebody to come out to talk to us, however long it takes.

“Of course it is regrettable that services have been impacted.”

Mick Mansell, one of the postal workers who got behind the unofficial action, said: “We have had a member of staff dismissed for her sick record. She has got mitigating circumstances and we feel it is an unfair dismissal.”

A Royal Mail spokesperson said: “Royal Mail is disappointed at the unballoted action which took place at Bridgwater Delivery Office.

“We are pleased that colleagues returned to work on Saturday and we are focusing on ensuring there is minimal impact to the service.

“We apologise to customers for the disruption to their mail services and we are doing all we can to minimise this disruption.

“Royal Mail is fully committed to the process of trying to resolve concerns of postal workers based in Bridgwater by following the national jointly-agreed framework with the Communication Workers Union (CWU).”

Mr Chapple added: “We have lodged an appeal and we think we have got an excellent case and that this woman should be reinstated immediately.”

He added that part of the negotiations to return to work included the fasttracking of the appeal but Royal Mail said they would not comment on that.

The manager of the Bridgwater Royal Mail depot was unavailable for comment.