Martin Docherty-Hughes, MP for West Dunbartonshire, has hit out at TSB bank following the announcement that its local branch in Alexandria is set to permanently close.
The local SNP MP slammed bosses at TSB bank for ‘abandoning’ its most vulnerable customers who rely on local banking services because they are unable to travel or cannot access digital banking.
TSB announced this week that it would be closing a third of its local bank branches, with the Alexandria TSB branch earmarked for closure along with 72 other sites in Scotland with the loss of up to 300 jobs.
Local MP Martin Docherty-Hughes said TSB had shown a complete disregard for vulnerable residents and small businesses in the area by announcing the Alexandria bank closure without consultation following the decision to shut its Dumbarton branch earlier this year.
Martin Docherty-Hughes MP said:
“The decision by TSB to abandon our communities in the middle of a pandemic shows the disregard they have for the vulnerable residents and small businesses who rely on local banking services.
“The reality is that many of my constituents in West Dunbartonshire, especially those who are elderly or disabled, are unable to access digital banking services and have no choice but to do their banking in-branch.
“Given the big high street banks continue to make multi-million pound profits, I question why these branch closures are necessary – especially at a time when so many of the small businesses who depend on them are struggling.
“Shutting down a local bank shouldn’t be taken lightly – it hits our high streets hard and the lack of consultation by TSB over the closure of its Alexandria branch so soon after shutting the one in Dumbarton is deeply disappointing.
“Embracing the use of digital banking technologies does not necessarily have to result in the complete disappearance of banks from our towns. The UK banking industry should take note of what digital nations like Estonia are doing to protect local provision of these essential public services.
“Any big bank that insists on abandoning our communities by shutting local branches shouldn’t take the loyalty of their customers here for granted.”