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bankBiggar is one of the branches saved by SNP pressure.

 

Clydesdale MSP Aileen Campbell has hailed a local victory in the fight to prevent the closure of Royal Bank bank branches across the constituency.

Following huge pressure from the SNP, RBS has today confirmed that ten branches nationally will be saved from closure, including two that are the 'the last bank in town' in Clydesdale: Biggar and Douglas.

Others are Kyle of Lochalsh, Castlebay, Inverary, Tongue, Comrie, Gretna, Melrose, and Beauly.

Aileen met RBS to explain that the latest round of closures would only leave Lanark servicing the whole of the Clydesdale constituency and that rural Lanarkshire had been disproportionately impacted by the savage cuts to banking services.

At a national level, the SNP continuously raised the issue in the UK Parliament, including questions from Ian Blackford MP to the Prime Minister during Prime Minister’s Questions on three separate occasions, and two SNP parliamentary debates.

The issue of the RBS bank closures has also been debated in the Scottish Parliament, and there has been a concerted local campaign by SNP MPs and MSPs across Scotland.

In recent weeks, SNP Westminster Leader Ian Blackford has held productive talks with RBS chiefs.

The SNP have welcomed the progress but have pledged the campaign to save the remaining branches across Scotland will continue – and have called on the Tory government to finally step up and join with the efforts.

Ian Blackford MP has previously condemned the Tory government for “failing to lift a finger” in the campaign to save the bank branches from closing.

Theresa May has repeatedly said she sees the closing of the banks as a “commercial matter” and has refused to intervene or assist despite being the majority shareholder.

Commenting, Aileen Campbell said: “This is very welcome news and follows a concentrated campaign by the SNP to keep these banks open.

"I held talks with RBS to explain the brutal local impact this would have on my constituents following previous closure rounds that shut Carluke, Forth and Abington’s banks - this latest round would have left only one RBS branch servicing the whole of Clydesdale. That is and was unacceptable

“While this will come as relief to the communities of Douglas and Biggar who can continue to use their branches, RBS have failed to perform a complete U-turn, and I will continue to campaign for a permanent U-turn and a similar reprieve for Lesmahagow, Carnwath and Strathaven.

“It is really disappointing that the Tories, despite the public being the majority shareholder of this bank, have failed to engage in efforts to save these vital local banks from closure – leaving many communities with the damaging prospect of losing their last bank in town.

“I will be seeking another urgent meeting with RBS to ensure we can do all we can to continue the sustainability of our local banks which are hugely important for local people and businesses."

 

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Aileen Campbell MSP, Kirkton Chambers, 12 Kirkton Street, Carluke ML8 4AB • 01555 750 249 • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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