Fight to retain bank

Members of the Maniototo business community. Photo supplied.
Members of the Maniototo business community. Photo supplied.
Members of the Maniototo business community showed their support for the retention of the district's only bank and gathered outside the Westpac branch in Ranfurly for a photograph yesterday.

Maniototo Business Group chairwoman Amie Pont said at the group's meeting yesterday more than 40 business people discussed the bank's proposed closure.

''The consensus was we'll fight against it.''

The group would make a combined submission to the bank hierarchy and many of the group's members were filing individual submissions as well, she said.

Proposed closures of 19 branches were outlined to Westpac bank staff last week and more than 70 jobs were at stake, a union official said.

Waitaki MP Jacqui Dean is holding a meeting in Ranfurly tomorrow between 11am and noon at the Wallace Memorial Room, in John St, for people to air their concerns about the closure.

Mrs Pont said because the Maniototo was a growth area, it needed upgraded bank services and an ATM, not reduced services.

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