Christina McKelvie MSP writes to CEO of RBS, Ross McEwan, following Hamilton and Larkhall closure news
In an open letter to RBS Chief Executive, Ross McEwan, SNP MSP for Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse, Christina McKelvie, has demanded that the Royal Bank of Scotland reconsiders plans to close their Hamilton and Larkhall branches. The move comes after RBS announced up to 680 staff were facing redundancy, with the closure of over 250 RBS and NatWest bases.
In the letter, the SNP MSP calls the move by RBS ‘morally repugnant’ and ‘short-sighted’, citing the preference of her constituents to bank locally in addition to online banking.
As a reserved issue, the UK Government is responsible for the regulation of banking services across Scotland, and own a controlling stake in RBS.
Commenting within the letter, Christina McKelvie states:
“RBS have demonstrably put profit before people.
“Despite recent profits of £939 million in the first 6 months alone of 2017, and with a 73% UK taxpayer stake within the bank, I find the decision of RBS to close these branches both incredulously short-sighted and morally repugnant.
“My constituents in Larkhall could now face up to a 12-mile round trip to visit a ‘local’ branch.
“Whilst online and mobile transactions are more prominent, I do not accept this as an acceptable rationale to cut local services that some of my constituents are heavily reliant upon.
Speaking after the publication of the letter, the Hamilton, Larkhall and Stonehouse MSP added:
“It is high-time that the now profit-making RBS are held accountable for their decisions to make my constituents redundant and to cut their local services.
“In my letter, I have stressed the need to retain a localised service and not forcing some of my constituents through an arduous 12-mile round trip to access their bank. I have demanded an urgent meeting with RBS to ensure the protection of jobs and services within Hamilton and Larkhall.
“As banking regulation is a reserved issue, the UK Government needs to act to ensure the industry is properly regulated and customers and businesses are properly catered for across Scotland.
“In the meantime, the SNP Scottish Government will continue to engage with the industry to mitigate as much as possible the economic and social impact of the planned closures.”