Plaid Cymru MP urges bank bosses to ‘reverse flawed move’
Plaid Cymru MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd Liz Saville Roberts has called on Barclays to reconsider its decision to stop customers from making cash withdrawals in Post Office branches in her constituency from the 8th January 2020.
Whilst some services for Barclays customers will be unaffected - such as cash and cheque deposits and balance enquiries – the decision to remove cash withdrawal services from Post Office branches after this date has been met with fierce criticism.
In 2017, the Post Office and the major UK High Street banks entered into an industry-wide agreement enabling anyone with a UK bank account to undertake a range of banking transactions at post offices.
This agreement made local banking facilities available for individuals and businesses in communities where the last bank branch had closed its doors.
The Post Office recently announced a new Banking Framework agreement with 28 UK banks that ensures that customers can continue to have free access to a range of cash and cheque banking services across the 930 Post Office branches in Wales.
Liz Saville Roberts MP said: ‘Banking services provided by the Post Office for high street bank customers are a lifeline for many of my constituents who have had to deal with banks abandoning our towns in recent years.’
‘As a consequence of local bank closures, the Post Office plays a vital part in financial inclusion - fast becoming the most accessible and secure place for handling financial transactions, particularly in rural and remote areas.’
‘Barclays is the only bank to scrap over-the-counter cash withdrawals at Post Office branches. This unjustifiable decision to stop customers accessing their own money is a deeply flawed move.’
‘Since the closure of local bank branches, people living in Blaenau Ffestiniog, Tywyn and Barmouth have become reliant on the Post Office for their banking needs. Those who bank with Barclays will now face further barriers to accessing their cash in these communities.’
‘Not only has Barclays abandoned these communities by closing their branches; this decision is a double blow for loyal customers who have stood by the bank despite being repeatedly let down.’
‘Access to free cash withdrawals at post offices is vital, especially to the elderly and vulnerable. People cannot be expected to travel the tens of miles to the nearest branch of Barclays to make a simple cash withdrawal, especially when there is no branch within a reasonable distance.’
‘I urge Barclays to think again and reverse this decision before it is implemented.’