hope following branch closure

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CAMPAIGNERS who fought against the closure of the Nationwide Building Society in Mildenhall have been given new hope this week.

The branch on Market Place closed this week leaving account holders having to travel to Bury St Edmunds or other towns to do their over the counter transactions.

The closure came despite a 260 name petition organised by account holder Carolyn Bright and backed by councillors at Forest Heath District Council.

Now rival firm Ipswich Building Society has revealed that it is in discussions with a view to moving into the site.

Paul Winter chief executive of Ipswich Building Society said: “We are in discussions with Balmforth estate agents and hope to get a positive outcome.

“We are keen to get a presence in Mildenhall and we should have some indication in the next couple of weeks whether the move will go ahead.

“It has all happened quite quickly for us.

“We saw that Nationwide had made its decision to close

“We are the only Suffolk based building society and thought that may be we could come in and benefit both our business and the town.

“The missing bit of the jigsaw really is seeing what sort of demand there is and whether it will be successful for us.”

But he said the campaign to keep the Nationwide branch open gave some indication that a move could go ahead.

“It is not definite that we are moving in,” said Mr Winter.

“What will help us is if we can clearly say that the demand is there for our services – it will make those discussions we are having much easier.

Forest Heath Cllr David Bowman, cabinet member for economic development and tourism said: “We are delighted that Ipswich Building Society is considering opening an agency in Mildenhall.

“The council will fully support them in any way they can. If it does make the decision to come to Mildenhall, it will be very good news for our town and community.”