A MOBILE banking service operating for 45 minutes once a week in Irvinestown following last month’s closure of Ulster Bank has been branded an “insult to the people of north Fermanagh.”
The bank closed its doors on June 20th and in its place a mobile banking service visits the town every Friday to serve customers but only stays for 45 minutes. A community banker is also now based at Irvinestown Library offering a drop-in clinic.
At the July Fermanagh and Omagh District Council meeting, DUP Cllr David Mahon raised concerns about the level of service now being offered to Ulster Bank customers since the bank closed.
“We have gone from having a full banking service to this which is absolutely disgraceful. We were led to believe that Ulster Bank representatives would be there for a much longer period of time so this is an absolute joke and completely unacceptable,” he said.
Cllr Mahon proposed that a letter be written to the Royal Bank of Scotland from the council expressing concerns at this reduced level of service.
“They have treated us with complete disregard despite meetings with them when we were promised this and that.
“ I spoke recently to one of the Ulster Bank staff about their community banker. They just rolled their eyes in their head so that will tell you how much use that person is going to be.”
The UUP’s Diana Armstrong added: “By the time the mobile bank parks in the carpark it won’t even have cooled down before it takes off again.
“We are talking about 45 minutes once a week for the people of Irvinestown, particularly the elderly, to conduct their business. We have a rural need here to have that addressed because this is not sufficient.”
Cllr Raymond Farrell told the meeting: “You might as well keep the engine running if you’re only going to be there for 45 minutes.
“I was contacted by two elderly constituents who went to Irvinestown to do some banking recently only to find it had shut.
“They then travelled on to Enniskillen and couldn’t get parked anywhere near the bank there which caused them extreme distress. It’s totally scandalous and insult to the people of north Fermanagh.”
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