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Call for banking hub in Denbigh following branch closures

Plaid Cymru; Cllrs Delyth Jones, Emrys Wynne, Rhys Thomas, Arwel Roberts and Gwyneth Ellis. Picture Mandy Jones

A banking hub is needed in Denbigh following a series of branch closures in the town, councillors have said.

The Plaid Cymru group on Denbighshire County Council said the creation of a hub is “essential” to the local community.

Denbigh has lost all of its high street bank branches after HSBC, Halifax, NatWest and Barclays shut their doors in recent years.

Cllr Delyth Jones, the Leader of the Plaid Cymru group says the withdrawal has left many local residents “in the lurch”.

Banking hubs have been created in other parts of the UK, including one that opened in Prestatyn in December 2023.

The idea for banking hubs was developed by LINK, the UK’s cash access and ATM network.

They are similar to traditional bank branches but spaces are shared and consist of a counter service operated by Post Office staff.

Customers of any bank can withdraw and deposit cash, make bill payments, and carry out regular banking transactions. Free ATMs, and cashback without purchase, are also provided.

They also have private spaces where customers can speak to a staff member from their own bank about more complicated issues.

The banks work on a rotating basis, which means staff from different banks are available on different days.

Cllr Delyth Jones said: “Bank branches have been disappearing from North Wales’ high streets for many years and Denbigh has been hit particularly hard by this trend.

“It has now been left without any high street bank branches and this exodus has left local residents, local businesses and many other organisations without the banking services they need.

“That is why the Plaid Cymru group on Denbighshire County Council is calling for the creation of a banking hub in Denbigh, which would be an economic lifeline for many local people and would go some way to rectifying the situation as it currently stands.

“Although there are more transactions being done digitally, there are still an awful lot of people who rely on cash. They shouldn’t have to travel for miles to access the services they need.

“We’re seeing more and more communities across Wales becoming financial deserts.

“Being able financial services is fast becoming something of a luxury, and Denbigh is a prime example of that.

“The bank closures in Denbigh have caused real difficulties for many customers, especially those who are unable to do their banking online.

“The closures have hit independent retailers and elderly residents particularly hard, and those who struggle with accessing digital services have effectively been left in the lurch.

“Therefore, we urge LINK to rethink its previous refusal to create a banking hub in the town.

“It’s unacceptable that a town the size of Denbigh has been left without proper access to banking services.”

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