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Belleek suffers blow with bank closure
THE First Trust Bank’s sub-office in Belleek is to close in October as part of a streamlining exercise.
The news, coming in the wake of the placing of the Hotel Carlton into administration, represents another blow to the village’s economy.
The local office operated two days a week and employed two staff. Come 25th October, they will be re-located within the bank.
A local businessman, who asked not to be named, said the closure would leave Belleek with just the one bank whereas, at one time, it was served by three banks.
“Once you start losing one thing, it goes on to something else, today a bank, tomorrow a post office and then something else.”
A spokesman for First Trust stressed there would be no compulsory redundancies, either with regard to Belleek or the sub-office in Dromore which will close on 16th November.
The First Trust premises in Belleek is rented, but the one in Dromore is solely owned by First Trust.
The proposed closures have been condemned by local elected representatives.
Sinn Fein MLA Phil Flanagan said Belleek had suffered terribly from the recession: “We have recently seen threats to the viability major employers in the town. This decision is a further blow to the local community.