Orkney representatives respond to Stromness Bank of Scotland closure

Orkney's representatives Liam McArthur MSP and Alistair Carmichael MP have sought urgent assurances over the announcement that the Bank of Scotland is set to close its Stromness branch from 17 August 2022.

The Bank of Scotland and its parent company Lloyds Banking Group have today announced they intend to close 19 of their Scotland sites over the course of this year.  The Kirkwall branch is set to remain open.

It follows the closure of Royal Bank of Scotland Stromness branch in 2015.

Responding, Mr McArthur said:

"News that Stromness is set to lose its last bank will be a further blow to the local community.

"While banking services have increasingly moved online, branches still provide an important service for local cash access and financial advice.

"I will be seeking to speak with the Bank of Scotland urgently to ensure that any closure does not threaten local jobs and on best we can maintain the services provided in Stromness."

Mr Carmichael added:

"This is disappointing news to say the least.  Banking has changed enormously over the years and the pandemic has seen a lot of customers move online.  Even so, many islanders, particularly older and more vulnerable people rely on bricks-and-mortar banks as a matter of trust.  What we cannot afford to see is an ongoing draining away of community services over time.

"We need an absolute assurance from Bank of Scotland that jobs and services will not be undermined and that Stromness will continue to get the level of banking access it deserves."

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