Campaigners 'delighted' as date for new Welwyn cash machine confirmed
PUBLISHED: 06:54 13 September 2019
A new cash machine is set to be installed in Welwyn after it lost its only ATM earlier this year.
The village's Barclays branch shut in March - despite a campaign to save it - which left residents without local cash withdrawal facilities.
However, campaigners have welcomed some success after it was confirmed a new ATM will be fitted outside Tesco Express in Welwyn High Street on October 1.
Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps said: "I've been working with the community over the past few months to bring back this essential service.
"It was disappointing to lose the Barclays branch, but we finally have an installation date for a new ATM, which I'm sure will be welcomed by local businesses and residents."
Councillor Tony Kingsbury, leader of Welwyn Hatfield Borough Council, said: "Both Grant and I have been liaising with Tesco, and I am delighted that a solution for an ATM has been found.
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"This supports the local residents and helps to ensure businesses thrive."
Welwyn resident Sandra Kyriakides, who was also involved in the Barclays campaign, welcomed the ATM but conceded it falls short of replacing the bank, the closure of which has hit High Street footfall.
Although some residents now use online banking, the former Independent borough councillor said the closure has come too early for Welwyn's elderly population - many of whom still rely on a "cash society".
"Now all the elderly people are really suffering because they have to get to Welwyn Garden City just to do a transaction," Sandra added.
"There are a lot of things where you have to go to the bank, but now they have to get a bus to Welwyn Garden City and back so it can take a whole morning just to do a banking transaction."
Duane Campbell, of Tesco Bank, said it is committed to ensuring ATM services remain available and free at the point of use, adding: "We're delighted to have recently worked with the local community to facilitate the opening of a new ATM in Welwyn. This will be available for customers to use in October."
There is also currently also a cash machine at the BP petrol station on the outskirts of Welwyn.