Canada Post changed the locks on a community mailbox in Ottawa's Blossom Park neighbourhood this week, but residents say there was just one problem: the keys to the locks were still in the mailboxes.

The 48 locks at a box on Alderwood Street were due to be changed after concerns the locks had previously frozen during the winter months, but residents say Canada Post was supposed to mail the new keys weeks in advance.

Instead, they appear to have delivered the keys to the mailboxes sometime in the last day, the same time frame in which the locks were changed.

David Barker

David Barker was able to get his key to the new lock, but only because the mail carrier opened the whole superbox when he was there. (Robyn Miller/CBC)

David Barker unlocked his mailbox on Tuesday, but said it wouldn't open on Wednesday morning. He tried a de-icer and that didn't work either.

He said he waited for the mail carrier, who told him his key should have arrived weeks ago.

"So he opened up the mailbox and lo and behold there were all the keys for every neighbour in the neighbourhood," he said. "Their keys were in the mailbox."

Notice of new locks in October

People who were there at the time were able to get their new keys, but Barker said anyone else was out of luck.

"Very frustrating, especially before Christmas and people are expecting packages, bills, cards," he said.

Jo-Anne Sparkes said she discovered Wednesday evening that her key no longer worked and still hasn't been able to get her mail.

Sparkes said she got a notice in October the locks would be changed.

"Which was great that they were going to change the locks but I don't think they synchronized timing properly and this is a bad time of the year," Sparkes said.

As of Wednesday evening, Canada Post has not yet responded to a request for comment.