Moray SNP News
TORY MINISTER REJECTS CALLS TO PREVENT BANK CLOSURES
UK Government Ministers have rejected Richard Lochhead’s calls for them to intervene to save the last remaining bank branch in Lossiemouth.
Moray’s MSP wrote to the Economic Secretary to the Treasury, John Glen MP, after the Bank of Scotland confirmed it was going ahead with plans to close branches in Lossiemouth and Keith.
Mr Lochhead asked the UK Government to take action to prevent the closure of the last remaining bank branch in communities, including Lossiemouth.
The MSP’s call for action comes after a report from ‘Which?’ magazine published in 2017 showed that Moray is one of the areas hit hardest by bank closures in Scotland – figures show that 40% of bank branches in the area have closed in recent years with many communities left with no banks at all.
Expressing his frustration at the UK Government’s lack of action, Mr Lochhead said:
“It is absolutely clear from the Conservative Government’s response that Ministers are on the side of the big banks and not on the side of the communities and customers who are being abandoned by them.
“It’s ludicrous that the Bank of Scotland is set to abandon the town of Lossiemouth at a time when the community is preparing for expansion at the RAF base and the increase in population that will bring.
“Communities in Moray have been hit hard by bank closures in recent years, with 40% of bank branches having closed and there’s strong feeling locally about the rate at which community banking services are being decimated locally. It’s particularly hard for the public to stomach when it was taxpayers cash that bailed out these banks at their time of need – and now these banks are bailing on communities in Moray.
“People in Lossiemouth need the UK Government to step up and take action to save their last bank – Conservative Ministers need to start putting the needs of communities like Lossiemouth ahead of the interests of the big banks.
“And perhaps the Bank of Scotland should consider giving the building to the community to allow them to take steps to try to attract another bank to set up in the community.”