'Sad day for Edgeworthstown' as Ulster Bank closes its doors for final time

Aisling Kiernan

Reporter:

Aisling Kiernan

Email:

aisling.kiernan@longfordleader.ie

Ulster Bank Edgeworthstown

Gerry Lynn, Chairman of the traders assocoation

The Ulster Bank branch in Edgeworthstown closed its doors for the last time on Friday evening last.

The bank, which has been part of the fabric of the mid Longford town for over 100 years, closed with the loss of a number of jobs.

Local area representative, Cllr Paul Ross (FG) said it was a sad day for the town, but he remains hopeful that the ATM service will be retained.

“It is a very sad day for this town,” added Cllr Ross.

“There is a huge air of disappointment over the closure especially in light of the fact that when the branch closed in Granard, Ulster Bank assured us at the time that Edgeworthstown was safe.”

In a statement to the Leader, Ulster Bank confirmed the ATM services would remain in Edgeworthstown and a mobile banking service was being provided to the people of the area on three days per week including Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

“Ulster Bank said they were committed to retaining the ATM service here and we are holding them to that,” Cllr Ross continued.

“This closure will have a huge impact on this town and on all the people that work and live here.
“Now they will go to other towns like Longford and Mullingar and that will affect trade here in Edgeworthstown.”

Meanwhile, Ulster Bank said the move was part of a restructuring and investment initiative across the business and was in response to changing customer demand.

“We continue to build the dynamic and innovative bank that we are becoming for our customers,” a spokesperson added.

“We are adapting to the changing nature of the banking and retail sectors and investing to meet our customer’s evolving needs.”

Brigid Duffy who is secretary of the local school also spoke to the Leader on Friday.

She said that once the bank closed, there would be nowhere in Edgeworthstown to lodge money.

“We have been fighting and fighting to get Ulster Bank to realise that the facility here in Edgeworthstown is a life line for so many people,” continued Ms Duffy who is also treasurer of Edgeworthstown Trader’s Committee.

“This town is full of industry and anytime you went into the Ulster Bank in Edgeworthstown it was packed, no matter what time of the day you went in, and all our efforts to keep it here fell on deaf ears.

“We are all very angry over this; we do everything we can in Edgeworthstown to make this a better place to work and live in.”

Gerry Lynn is the chairman of the trader’s committee.

He said the closure of Ulster Bank in Edgeworthstown signaled a “dark day for the town”.
“People are gutted over this; we have spent the last nine months trying to save the bank and nobody wanted to know,” he added.

“We haven’t even got the luxury of a second bank here either - Bank of Ireland pulled out 10 or 15 years ago.

“We would be urging Longford Co Council to get involved in a town like Edgeworthstown - this is rural Ireland and if somebody doesn’t step up to the plate now, then we are in a lot of trouble.”