BANK customers are being urged to have their say in a review into the future of Annandale and Eskdale’s only surviving RBS branch at Gretna.
The call comes from David Mundell, MP for Dumfriesshire Clydesdale and Tweeddale together with Dumfriesshire MSP Oliver Mundell, who have both opposed closures across the district.
Gretna was among ten branches nationally given an, at least, temporary reprieve following a controversial nationwide closure programme announced last winter.
Chartered accountants and business advisers Johnston Carmichael were commissioned by RBS to carry out the independent survey and are seeking customer and wider community views.
A team from the firm will be at the Gretna branch on August 2.
David Mundell said: “RBS say they will implement the recommendation from Johnston Carmichael so it is vital as many people as possible express their views to the team about the impact the loss of the branch will have.
“Many constituents have expressed concern and, if the closure moves ahead, it is clear that there would be genuine hardship and inconvenience.”
Meanwhile, Oliver Mundell pointed out that, in addition to the other RBS branches in Annandale and Eskdale which had closed, the two in near-by Carlisle were also earmarked to shut.
He said: “Gretna is a busy centre for tourism, weddings and has a large retail sector and the bank provides a valuable service.
“I believe some customers from near-by branches, which have already closed, are now using it as an alternative and hopefully that might strengthen the branch’s case.”
However, Mr Mundell cautioned: “The only hope will be that the review shows the bank can be viable in the future through customer demand. That’s why I would urge as many potential users as possible to make their views known.”
Factors taken into consideration will include past and present transaction and customer numbers, alternative banking facilities, recent trends and local feedback.
Further details of the review and how to submit comments by the August 14 deadline can be found online at https://johnstoncarmichael.com/rbsbranchreview