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Two thousand sign petition opposing closure of Appleby's HSBC bank
3:11pm Wednesday 26th September 2012 in News
APPLEBY residents are continuing to fight the proposed closure of of the town’s HSBC bank and 2,000 people have added their name to a petition opposing the plan.
Penrith and the Border MP Rory Stewart convened a meeting bringing together Rachel Miller, area manager for HSBC, and Susan Spence, chairwoman of Appleby Community Acting Together (ACAT), to address the closure plan.
Residents fear the closure will have a detrimental effect, both socially and economically, upon Appleby. Ms Spence said that many Appleby residents who banked with HSBC would now be facing a 28 mile round-trip to Penrith, and that it would be the elderly, disabled, and those without a car, who would be hardest hit.
Ms Miller agreed to sit down formally with representatives from Appleby to allay concerns and allow both sides to present their case.
“These proposals really will come as a serious blow to many residents in Appleby, and the closure is just another example of the real difficulty rural communities face in trying to preserve and safeguard even basic services and provisions,” said MR Stewart.
“It is somewhat of a compliment to HSBC that 2,000 Appleby residents have signed a petition to fight its closure. I would like to see HSBC to do more to meet with local residents and work with them on proposals to address these very real concerns.
“The proposed meeting will go some way to amend this, and will hopefully allow the affair to be dealt with in a much more case-sensitive way. Appleby cannot be left feeling like it has been dropped off a cliff.”