Commenting on the Bank of Ireland branch closures announced today, 1st March 2021, Kevin Johnson CEO of CUDA (Credit Union Development Association), said
“Today’s announcement will be felt by consumers in many towns and villages throughout the country. While there is undoubtedly a move towards a more digital offering in the financial services sector, there are still a significant cohort of people who are not ready to make that change. The migration of banks to self-service branches has been a difficult transition for many people – particularly older customers, many of whom still favour face to face interaction. However, today has taken this migration one step further, with people in the affected locations no longer being given even the self-service option.
While Credit Unions have made great strides in terms of digital developments, the community ethos means than maintaining a local community presence is integral for the movement. As with Ulster Bank’s planned exit, I believe the announcement today will drive more and more people across the country to becoming members of their local Credit Union so that they can avail of traditional banking through both digital and face to face means, a pattern we’ve seen in other countries including Canada and the USA.”