Monday 16 January 2012

Campaigning against West End bank closure

With the new University of Dundee semester starting today, I have slammed the decision by the Royal Bank of Scotland to close its branch at the university’s student union and have  written to the Royal Bank’s Chief Executive Stephen Hester criticising the decision and asking for a review of the decision before it goes ahead.    It is understood that the Royal Bank is planning to close the branch in March or April.

The decision to close the branch at the Student Union is really detrimental to the University of Dundee’s students and staff.   Its been a hugely busy branch over the years – I first used it myself as a student in the early 1980s – and it is known to have had the busiest cash point in the whole of Scotland at a time.   I have therefore written to the bank’s Chief Executive urging him to reconsider the decision.

This closure decision comes on top of the decision to close the Ninewells Hospital branch in the West End Ward last year.    The loss of the branch at Ninewells Hospital was a blow.   In addition, many residents of the ward in the Ancrum/Pentland/Tullideph area miss the Lochee branch that was also shut last year.    Despite being largely in public ownership, the bank doesn’t seem much bothered about the public, the customers who rely on local branches.

There are nearly 18 000 students at the university in addition to staff who use the bank branch in Balfour Street on the campus.   It makes no commercial sense to close it.