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Aberdeenshire Campaign Against RBS Closures Continues in Huntly

>> 10 March 2018

The local campaign against the RBS closures continued this weekend in Huntly, with campaigners out to collect more signatures for the petition.

The campaign has been underway for several months, and has gathered significant numbers of signatures from Banff, Turriff, Stonehaven, Ellon and Huntly.

Following pressure from the SNP group at Westminster, RBS announced that some of the branches earmarked for closure would remain open, however none of those in Aberdeenshire were included in this list. The Economy, Jobs and Fair Work committee at the Scottish Parliament will now also consider this matter.

The Aberdeenshire Councillors who are campaigning on this issue plan to be in Edinburgh during the RBS AGM in May to campaing outside, and to hand over the petitions.

Commenting, SNP Councillor for Huntly, Strathbogie and Howe of Alford, Gwyneth Petrie, said:

“There continues to be significant concern locally about the planned closure of the RBS. Not only does it mean that customers of the bank will now have to travel a significant distance when they require banking services, but it will also add to the continuing decline of our town centre.

“RBS have said that the mobile banking van will visit the town twice a week, but will park on the outskirts, instead of travelling in to the town centre. The van already has accessibility issues – these will only be exacerbated by it being parked so far out of the town centre.

“Today we seen even more people queueing to sign the petition – I hope RBS listen to the voice of their customers.”

SNP Councillor Dr Glen Reynolds, who represents Banff and District, added:

“The number of people who have signed the petition is increasing. People realise that if they lose their bank branches, the town centres will be all the poorer and the impact will have a negative effect on not only the look of our High Streets but on the local economy.”

SNP Councillor for the Troup Ward Ross Cassie said:

“The RBS banks have been at the heart of our communities for many a decade. Our communities rely on the service they provide, yet in the name of profit that heart is to be ripped out.

“It is incomprehensible that at a time when the top executives receive millions of pounds in bonus’ each and sport receives millions in sponsorship from RBS, a fraction of that cost is to be saved depriving our communities of a banking service that the community has been loyal to and rely on.

“Hundreds of skilled and loyal workers are to be thrown out of work. We should not forget that those workers and us, the tax payer, own in the region of 70% of RBS. The UK Government holding the shares on our behalf should not abdicate their responsibility claiming the closure programme to be a commercial decision but should step In and halt this damaging programme immediately.”

Former RBS employee, SNP Councillor Alastair Forsyth, who represents Turriff & District said:

“The branch in Turriff is central to the High Street, and will be sadly missed. Businesses will find it increasingly difficult to bank with RBS if they are forced to travel significant distances to do so.”

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