I am presenting a petition on behalf of the burghers of Buckfastleigh and the surrounding area, which includes the world-renowned Buckfast abbey, with its monks and fortified wine. Buckfastleigh town centre has been renewed with a £3.5 million EU grant, but that will be money down the drain if its branch of Lloyds TSB, which is the last clearing bank in town, closes at the end of the month, as is planned. I am told that the post office may also follow suit, which would leave the high street with no clearing bank or post office. For that reason, I am presenting the petition, which has been signed by Stuart Barker, a county and district councillor and former mayor, and Mel Stride, the prospective Conservative parliamentary candidate for the new seat of Central Devon. The petition has also been supported by 1,300 constituents.
The petition states:
The Petition of residents of Buckfastleigh,
Declares that the closure of the TSB bank Buckfastleigh, the last clearing bank in the town, will have a devastating impact on the economy of the town and surrounding area and the many people who rely on these facilities.
The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urge the Government to introduce legislation to ensure that residents of towns where bank branches have closed still have access to clearing bank facilities.
And the Petitioners remain, etc.
To lie upon the Table.