LOSS OF BANKS AND THREAT TO POST OFFICES IN ISLAND COMMUNITIES
In Westminster this week, I raised the proposed closure of Bank of Scotland branches on Cumbrae and Arran as well as the announcement that the post office in Brodick is set to close.
The reality is that legislation is needed to set minimum service standards for the provision of banking and postal services in rural areas, including for the provision of services through physical outlets.
The closure of bank branches and post offices owing to economic shifts and technological advancements has left our island and rural residents feeling overlooked and isolated. Village by village, town by town, we have seen closures of bans as corporate priorities have shifted. Similarly, the UK Government’s failure to pay postmasters properly, and the steady stripping away the delivery of UK Government services by our post offices, started under the previous Labour Government and continued under the current Government services, has left many local post offices simply unsustainable and struggling, in addition to the damage caused to our postmasters by the Horizon scandal.
I know the Post Office is working hard to secure a new franchisee to continue post office services in Brodick but it is time for the UK Government to do more to support the valuable community assets which our post offices are.
I will continue to pursue the need for better UK Government support for our post masters.