COMMUNITIES and businesses are working together in a bid to ensure vital supplies are reaching residents in rural villages.

Heavy snow has left a number of communities struggling for every day items like bread and milk, with lorries unable to make deliveries to village shops.

However, efforts are being made to see supplies get through.

Jo Allen, vice-chairwoman of Gifford's community council, said: "I have not been out today but it is still very snowy here.

"I think, from what I am seeing and hearing, one of the biggest issues is the drifts from the fields into the roads, like the Gifford to Haddington roads, making them unpassable.

"In Gifford, if you are in the village centre, we have still got access to amenities.

"Hoggs Newsagent has been working with Yester Farm Dairies to get extra milk.

"The Co-op has been open when it can but unable to get deliveries through.

"Worst comes to worst, there are the hotels serving hot food.

"Slightly further out, it is a more challenging picture.

"Neighbours are bonding together to do runs for supplies, for wood for fires, and there is a real sense of community spirit - but it is a challenging picture."

It is a similar picture in nearby Garvald, where the community council is linking up with Yester Farm Dairies in a bid to ensure vital supplies, like milk and cheese, are getting through.

Phillip White, vice-chairman of Garvald and Morham Community Council, told the Courier: "It is extremely difficult, to be honest.

"People cannot get out of the village and we have had people trying to get to Gifford and cars are getting stuck at Baro.

"We are desperately in need of a snow plough and gritter.

"It is certainly not good up here."

Mr White is due to meet with Penny Short, chairwoman of the community council, later today (Friday) in a bid to find a way for supplies from Yester Farm Dairies to make it to the village.

That could see representatives of the village meeting at a halfway point before then returning to Garvald with milk and cheese.

The business has already confirmed there will be no doorstep deliveries due to the conditions, although they are operating a limited service.

Mr White added: "We live in a village where we have got a great community spirit.

"Everybody will help everybody else."