The Leader of East Lindsey District Council, Councillor Craig Leyland, has expressed his disappointment at a decision by Lloyds Bank to close its branches in Alford, Coningsby and Mablethorpe.
In a letter addressed to the Bank’s Chief Executive, Councillor Leyland has made clear the impact their decision will have on communities in East Lindsey and calls for a rethink.
The letter reads: “As Leader of East Lindsey District Council, I wish to formally register my sincere regret, concern and sadness in response to the recent announcements to close your high street operations in Alford, Coningsby and Mablethorpe.
“We fully expect that the withdrawal of local banking facilities in these areas will have both a direct and knock-on detriment in terms of reducing footfall and vitality within our town centres.
“It will also leave a loyal business and residential customer base without access to dedicated financial services across many of our rural and coastal communities. “This is further exacerbated by poor Broadband coverage in remote areas of our District and a subsequent inability for some customers to access online services effectively.
“As a Council, we continue to respond to our own resource challenges in a range of innovative ways which aim to not only reduce the impact on our own customers, communities and frontline services, but also maintain our strategic commitment to supporting a healthy economy across the District that has access to skilled employment opportunities.
“It is fundamentally disappointing that these efforts are potentially undermined by the commercial decisions of local high street occupiers, such as yourselves, who fail to demonstrate a similar or adequate appreciation for their own customer’s needs.
“I would ask you to reconsider your decision to close these branches and would be willing to meet with any Lloyds Bank Management to discuss this. If the decision will not be reconsidered, I would be interested to learn what transitional arrangements you will be implementing to support your business and personal customers that will no longer have access to local Lloyds services.
“I also trust that you will be able to confirm what support arrangements are in place for staff at risk of redundancy through the announced closures and what alternative uses you may be looking to facilitate in relation to the vacated premises in the respective town centres.
“I would also urge you to work more effectively with local partners in advance of any future closure or restructuring proposals, so that we are better placed to understand and communicate the potential impact on our communities.
“It is apparent to me and my Council colleagues that there seems to have been very little consultation in relation to these proposals, which subsequently demonstrates a very poor disregard for the needs of business and residential customers in rural and coastal areas such as ours.”