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Barclays compromise over closed branches

 
Created on 27/06/2022 @ 09:30

 

Following a huge backlash to its plans to close branches in Welshpool and Newtown, Barclays has revealed that it will provide staff “at least two days a week” as a compromise.

The area was stunned by the banking giant’s announcement last week that it would close its final two branches in Montgomeryshire, leaving customers with long trips to Oswestry or Shrewsbury for physical banking needs.

But there was a huge backlash, led by readers of MyWelshpool and MyNewtown, who were told that the Post Office would be picking up the bulk of banking services instead.

However, Member of the Senedd, Russell George, called for urgent talks with bank bosses and has reported back that they are planning the compromise of two days banking at yet-to-be-confirmed locations called ‘Barclays in the Community’. He was also told there would be no planned redundancies.

“Bank branch closures will not only have detrimental impact on loyal customers, especially those who are elderly and vulnerable, but it will also have implications for the local business community, for Welshpool and Newtown as towns and the wider area, and for the reputation of Barclays,” said Mr George.

“On questioning the bank about what it meant for the staff locally, Barclays told me that the staff will still work within Barclays and no staff will be made redundant. Staff will work from home and what they called ‘Barclays in the Community’.

“Whilst banks have pointed out the use of online banking, there remains a strong need for the presence of banking staff within the community. The bank informed me that customers will still be able to physically access staff at least twice a week, in both towns, at a location that is yet to be confirmed.

“Whilst informing me, the bank said that they would put plans in place to support their customers, I made it clear that no plans would be a substitute for a full-time bank on the High street in both towns.

“Going forward, I want to focus on the areas of concern or questions residents have on transactions or matters that can’t be completed via the options the bank has outlined to me, particularly known areas where the Post Office can’t support on. The bank has agreed to meet with me again so I can raise specific matters.”

Mr George said that he was told by the bank that the Post Office was now able to process transactions, and that they would be removing the ATM cash machines, as “both towns already had sufficient cash points”.

Mr George has encouraged readers to complete his survey so he can capture further questions and areas that can be raised. His survey can be completed at https://www.russellgeorge.com/bank-survey

Residents can also call Mr George's office on 01686 610887 for a hard copy of the survey to be posted.

 

 

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