BANKING: Online’s not always viable

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Morpeth still retains a range of branches for banks and building societies so when Halifax moved from its branch near Morpeth Clock Tower years ago, it was a shock.

However, now that we are in the era of branch closures and cash machines being taken out, I wonder how long it will be before Morpeth is affected like other places.

For many people, banking online isn’t, and will never be, a viable option to using a cash machine or a local branch, so hopefully the existing options in the town will continue.

Amidst the endless debate over what went wrong with Arch, the development company, I hope someone keeps reminding the powers that be at County Hall of the continued need for positive regeneration all over the county.

Blyth is looking at a Business Improvement District (BID) scheme as a positive solution to the noticeable amount of empty retail units in the town.

Given the debate in Morpeth over a similar proposal, and the result of the limited county council follow-up action, I would have hoped that councillors and concerned Blyth stakeholders would have been asking the leader of the council for its plans.

Admittedly there is a queue of people with similar questions from Ashington and Morpeth, but sometimes the old-fashioned approach is the best one to get answers.

It will be interesting to see how the Alnwick Playhouse looks after restoration work.

As someone who used Alnwick Library whenever I was in Alnwick, it will be interesting to see how the library is incorporated, then how the scale of the library compares with the library facilities in Cramlington and Ashington leisure centres, rather than with the libraries at Blyth or Morpeth.

Robert Pollard

Morpeth