Following news that a banking hub is to open in Moreton, two local councillors in nearby Wallasey Ward have now applied for a hub in Wallasey Village, bidding for it to be the next to be agreed.
Councillor Lesley Rennie said: “Following the great news for Moreton, we met with Councillors Colin Baldwin, Gary Bennett and Vida Wilson to see how they had achieved this, when there are just seven other banking hubs up and running in the rest of the country.
“Many of the issues they highlighted – such as lack of banking, social isolation and few alternatives – could also apply to Wallasey Village.”
One of the local businesses backing the bid is APH Accountants.
Managing Director Paul White explains:
We currently serve approximately 500 clients in the area and there is most definitely a lack banking resource in the local area.
Many new businesses face difficulty opening new business accounts. Wallasey has hundreds of businesses that struggle to get loans or overdrafts; somewhere to deposit cash or someone to speak to at a bank.
I have lost count of the number of times clients have asked me about banking issues they have and with nothing local and in towns where there are banks the waiting lists are months long, it makes their personal and business life difficult.
Some elderly clients don’t have use of technology and travelling for banking services can be difficult for them. Phoning the banking is time consuming and confusing with automated messages and can also present language problems when you do finally get through to someone.
Councillor Ian Lewis added: “In October last year, all councillors voted to support banking hubs. By bringing banking back to local communities, we can do our bit to tackle the ‘online or nothing’ approach being taken by banks and, increasingly, local councils.
“If even banks can see the sense in enabling some face to face contact, then Wirral Council should too and enable it’s taxpayers and residents to see a human being when necessary.”
Earlier this week, Ian and Lesley attended a meeting with Link. We'll report back to residents as soon as we hear further.