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Marston Green residents join forces over bank closure

Furious Marston Green residents and local MP Caroline Spelman have pleaded with Barclays bosses to go back on a decision to close the only bank in the village

Furious Marston Green residents and local MP Caroline Spelman have pleaded with Barclays bosses to go back on a decision to close the only bank in the village.

Barclays has recently written to its customers informing them that the Station Road branch will close in September - a move residents say they have not been consulted about.

“What a disgusting and shabby way to treat all its loyal customers, many having been with them for up to 40 years or more,” said Rick Smallwood, of Marston Green Residents’ Association.

“This bank is completely out of touch with its customers.

“Without any prior consultation or discussion with anyone, this company sent out letters to all its customers and posted a notice on its door on June 14 stating that the branch would close down on September 20.

“There has been no consideration for the local business people and the long term effect it could have on them. This is the last bank in Marston Green so why close it down?”

Residents have argued it is unfair to expect customers, many of whom are elderly, to travel to another part of the borough to access services.

Mrs Spelman added: “I am taking up the closure of Marston Green with the Barclays management.

“There needs to be a proper consultation so they can understand how customers will be affected.

“This is the only bank in the village so it could affect the sustainability of Marston Green.

“Directing people to the Post Office puts pressure on another amenity and the nearest alternative branches are several miles away, so I’ve asked Barclays to reconsider.”

Councillor Bob Sleigh (Con, Bickehill) has helped to organise a petition which locals will be encouraged to sign this Saturday, outside the bank from 10.30am.

A spokeswoman for Barclays Bank said: “We are fully committed to the Barclays branch network and to ensuring that we have branches where customers need and use them.

“Unfortunately, we have some branches which have very low and continually declining customer numbers and it is unsustainable to keep these branches open.

“The decision to close Marston Green branch has not been taken lightly but is due to the continuing declining use of the branch.

“We appreciate that this will inconvenience some customers and we apologise for this but we need to ensure that our branches are in places where customers are using them.”

 

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