Plaid Cymru Member of Parliament for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, Liz Saville Roberts has requested an urgent meeting with HSBC bosses to discuss the bank’s intention to close branches in Barmouth, Tywyn and Blaenau Ffestiniog, despite fierce opposition from local people.
An online and paper petition calling on HSBC to reconsider its decision and to consult widely with the communities affected by the proposed closures has so far received over 600 signatures. But in reply to a letter from Liz Saville Roberts criticising the closures, HSBC said it would not reconsider the decision.
The Plaid Cymru MP accused the high street bank of failing its customers and described the bank’s methods of communicating the closures to its customers as ‘self-serving’.
Liz Saville Roberts MP said: “I’m bitterly disappointed that HSBC are refusing to reconsider their decision to close three of their branches in my constituency, in particular Blaenau Ffestiniog, which now faces losing its last remaining bank. Customers and bank service users in Barmouth and Tywyn will also suffer from HSBC’s decision.”
“I’ve been inundated with comments from concerned constituents and local businesses, angry at the lack of transparency with which this decision has been taken and aggrieved that internet banking is again being put before the needs of rural communities, many of which have woeful broadband access.”
“I take the opportunity to say that the method by which HSBC appears to come to a conclusion about the future of these three branches is opaque, not to say self-serving.”
“Communities should have been informed that the bank was considering branch closures rather than being presented with a commercial decision made on grounds which appear only to benefit a distant interest.”
“I’ve asked HSBC to meet with me and local Councillors to discuss our concerns and I hope they will respond to the overwhelming sense of disappointment felt by local people, including their own customers who feel cheated by this short-sighted decision.”