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Matthews calls for the closure of Bank of Ireland Branches to be addressed by the Oireachtas Finance

Date: 1 March 2021

Green Party TD for Wicklow, Steven Matthews has raised serious concerns regarding the closure of 3 Wicklow Bank of Ireland branches in Carnew, Rathdrum and Tinahely. This is part of a wider closure of 103 Branches nationally. Speaking as a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Finance, Deputy Matthews said:

“This news will have come as a shock for communities across Ireland both for customers, staff and businesses who use these branches. I was particularly disappointed to see closures in Tinahely, Carnew and Rathdrum, three vibrant and strong communities once again negatively impacted by the loss of rural services.

“As soon as the announcement was made, I wrote to the Chair of the Finance Committee to seek an urgent meeting with representatives from Bank of Ireland. I expect that this meeting will take place before the end of this month, and I look forward to engaging with the bank’s representatives on behalf of the constituents impacted.

“We need to ensure that those employed in the banks are treated fairly and redeployed whenever possible. I will also seek to address the concerns of customers who in many cases will have been with the bank for decades. They need clear communication as to the next steps being taken by the bank. It is positive that Bank of Ireland customers may be able to use An Post facilities for many services but communicating this, reducing disruption and engaging with their customers must be prioritised by Bank of Ireland.

“I accept that many people do their banking almost exclusively online and may not be impacted by the news, but we also must be cognisant of people, particularly those from an older generation who depend on having a branch in their town. These branches in Carnew, Tinahely and Rathdrum are not due to close until September, so Bank of Ireland have 6 months to get this transition right.

“With the loss of these three branches by Bank of Ireland and the recent news that Ulster Bank will be pulling services completely, this will impact across all communities and businesses in Wicklow. I hope that the meeting with the Finance Committee will be confirmed in the coming days but I will continue to push for the bank to appear before the committee to answer key questions relating to how this will impact their customers, concluded Deputy Matthews.



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