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Friday, November 22, 2013

KLS asks bankers' group for statement on HSBC closure

The chairman of Keep Llangollen Special (KLS) has fired the latest salvo in the battle to save the town's HSBC bank.

He has written to a bankers' organisation seeking its views on HSBC's refusal to discuss the axing of the Bridge Street branch next February.

Led by officials of Llangolen Chamber of Trade and Tourism, a group of around 25 protesters gathered outside the bank to demonstrate against the closure.

Now, Martin Crumpton, who chairs KLS, has referred the matter to the British Bankers' Association, the UK’s leading association for the banking and financial services sector, representing the interests of more than 240 member organisations with a worldwide presence in 180 countries.

In his email, he says: "I seek a Statement from the BBA, on behalf of my Community Group and many other interested parties, regarding the intractable refusal of HSBC to negotiate their programme of withdrawing branch services from rural communities in Wales, a matter raised in the Welsh Assembly this week due to its widespread detrimental effect on small communities.
"This programme, which we see mirrored by announcements of cuts by other major banks, is widely regarded as a cynical manoeuvre to cuts costs and increase profits, perhaps in response to threats of caps and levies by the Labour Party.
"That HSBC, to be followed by the other banks, previously known as the high street banks, is offloading customers onto the Post Office and the Internet is indisputable, whether by intent or not. That HSBC, a profitable business, will increase its profits by branch closures is also indisputable. We believe that the BBA shares a responsibility along with HSBC and other banks to act in a socially-responsible manner, and a Statement from you is eagerly anticipated."

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