Southport councillors, businesses and residents say they are “ very disappointed” at the NatWest bank’s decision to ‘slam the door’ on a planned public meeting over the proposed closure of their Churchtown branch.
Talks between Lib Dem councillors Pat Keith and John Dodd and Stephen Parle, NatWest’s chief executive for Merseyside and Lancashire, resulted in agreement to hold a public meeting at St Cuthbert’s Church hall when all parties could put forward their points of view.
But Councillor Keith had now been told by Mr. Parle that he has decided not to appear at the planned meeting and that he will, instead, be available at the Churchtown branch to discuss the situation with individuals. “I’m very disappointed that Mr Parle has pulled out of a this meeting,” said Cllr. Keith: “I believe the NatWest are trying to avoid public scrutiny by not giving people the opportunity to question their decision at a public forum.”
Wendy Tyson, resident solicitor, at Cockshott, Peck and Lewis said “ It’s a huge disappointment, but no surprise, that the bank’s management aren’t really listening to the views of people in our community.
“Their decision has been made to close the branch, and their customer’s views seem unimportant. I hope that there is a very long queue of angry customers waiting to meet the bank’s representative when he visits the branch.
John Dodd said: “ It’s up to local people to make a note of the date and to be there and explain what the closure will mean for their business or their elderly relative and how important this local branch is.”
“Mr. Parle will be available to see customers on;”
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