Press release from MVDC
Mole Valley District Council (MVDC) asked residents and businesses to share their views regarding bank closures in the district, via a survey. The survey received a total of 2,148 responses and the next step is to submit a community request to LINK for banking hubs in Mole Valley.
The responses to the survey were a mix of online and handwritten submissions from across the district, from residents, businesses and employees, and were overwhelmingly in support of banking hubs. Many residents commented on the importance and convenience of the face to face service. It was clear that digital solutions do not always work for everyone.
Banking hubs have the potential to make a real difference to individuals, small businesses and the communities they serve. In locations where bank branches have closed, banking hubs provide basic banking services including counter services run by the major banks and the Post Office, and dedicated rooms where customers can see community bankers from their own bank for more complicated matters that require specialist knowledge or privacy.
LINK previously assessed Leatherhead and Dorking and concluded that neither qualified for a banking hub. A report with analysis of the Mole Valley survey results, has been sent to LINK with a community request from the Leader of Mole Valley District Council, Cllr Stephen Cooksey. The request is for LINK to re-examine their previous decision in light of the new evidence provided by the survey results. The survey analysis has also been sent to Cash Access UK, the body tasked with providing banking hubs and deposit services in communities, based on relevant recommendations from LINK.
Cllr Stephen Cooksey, The Leader of Mole Valley District Council said: “While we appreciate that the world is moving towards digital services with pace, looking at the feedback received from residents and small businesses, we cannot disregard the importance of cash and face to face banking. It fosters a human connection that transcends transactions, building a foundation of trust and understanding beyond numbers on screen. I very much hope that LINK will re-consider the provision of the banking hubs in the district after receiving our community request, supported by the strong evidence of feedback from local communities.”
Councillor Keira Vyvian Robinson, Cabinet Member for Projects said: “We have recognised the importance of banking hubs for local communities and the initiative has remained on our agenda since July 2022 when we became aware of mass bank closures on our high streets. Banking hubs create space for learning, collaboration and personalised support, ensuring that every individual’s financial journey is guided with care and expertise. It’s important that residents who use cash and those who are less digitally savvy aren’t left behind and have access to the same level of banking services as the online community.”