New Banking Centre for Coulsdon + public meeting!

Dear All,

Following campaigning by local councillors, local residents including ECRA and me, I have just received some fantastic news I wanted to pass on right away. More details are below, but we will be holding a public meeting with operator Cash Access UK to go through the plans and answer questions on Thursday 23rd May 630pm-730pm, at Coulsdon Methodist Church, 83 Brighton Road, Coulsdon CR5 2BE (parking available).

Cash Access UK was set up in early 2023 by Bank of Ireland UK, Barclays, Danske Bank, HSBC, Lloyds Banking Group, NatWest Group, Santander, TSB and Virgin Money.   Although owned and funded by these banks, Cash Access UK is a not-for-profit company, and their purpose is to bring shared cash and banking services to communities across the UK where bank branches have closed down.

After reviewing the access to banking services locally and identifying the need for an additional facility to help meet the needs of the local community, I am delighted to say that they are planning to open a Banking Hub in Coulsdon. There is a full presentation here explaining the services and the process:

Banking Hub Community Information Pack

Opening a Banking Hub takes an average of 12 months.  These are the steps involved:

  • Cash Access UK will find a suitable property that meets the necessary requirements. These include size, condition and location (I have already suggested one suitable property to them)
  • Negotiate lease terms with the landlord
  • Once an offer is agreed, solicitors carry out the legal work so the lease can be signed. Cash Access UK may need to get planning approval before work starts on the fit out of the Banking Hub
  • The Post Office appoints a Banking Hub Operator and the banks each appoint Community Bankers so they are ready to serve customers on the day it opens
  • Carry out final checks to make sure everything is working so the Banking Hub can open its doors

Once opened, the Banking Hub will be open Monday-Friday, 9am-5pm, and there will be a counter service available to all customers where they can:

  • pay in cash and cheques
  • withdraw cash
  • check your balance
  • pay utility bills
  • top up your gas and electricity
  • access change-giving services (for small businesses)

Customers can also talk face-to-face with a staff member (a “Community Banker”) from their own bank or building society about more complicated banking enquiries like payments and transfers, managing their account, and how to use online banking. Community Bankers from each bank take it in turns to visit the Hub so you will find a Community Banker from a different bank available on each day of the week. Community Bankers are usually provided by the banks with the most customers in the local community.

I will be working closely with Cash Access UK along with local Councillors Ian Parker, Mario Creatura, Luke Shortland, Margaret Bird and Nikhil Thampi to make sure this plan happens as promised. I will keep pressing it forwards and share further updates.

In the meantime, please drop a reply to this email (or email chris.philp.mp@parliament.uk) if you would like to attend the public meeting on Thursday 23rd May 630pm-730pm at Coulsdon Methodist Church, 83 Brighton Road, Coulsdon CR5 2BE.

Please forward this on to friends and neighbours, and share on social media.