ABERLADY Post Office has been handed a lifeline after the Post Office recruited a new sub-postmaster.

The business was originally due to close in March after plans to introduce a pharmacy to run alongside it fell through.

 Andrew Gilhooly, a  temporary sub-postmaster on a 12-month contract, has now been appointed, with the hope that a more permanent solution can be found within that time frame to allow the business to keep running indefinitely.

The Post Office has been under the management of Ross and Louise Searle for the past 20 years.

Ross said: “This is very good news for us. It means my wife can retire, and the Post Office can stay open for the community without a break in service, which is a win-win.”

Ross will continue to work part-time to assist Mr Gilhooly in settling in.

County MP Martin Whitfield welcomed the news, saying: “I’m delighted that this agreement has been reached to allow Aberlady to retain its Post Office.

“I hope it will provide time to facilitate a more permanent solution to keep the Post Office in the village in the long-term. Louise and Ross have done an amazing job over many years and deserve great credit for the way they have fought to sustain the service in the village.”

Iain Gray MSP added: “I commend Louise, Ross and Post Office Ltd on this agreement and hope it will allow a long-term solution to be found."