Concerns over Tarbert ATM

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Western Isles MSP Alasdair Allan and Na Hearadh Agus Ceann A Deas Nan Loch SNP Councillor John Mitchell have raised concerns about the Tarbert cash machine, after it was yet again taken out of action.

The MSP had written to Lloyd Banking Group (owners of Bank of Scotland) in June to highlight performance issues in past summers and ask that steps be taken to ensure there was no repeat. The Bank responded by conducting a review of the ATM’s performance and informing the MSP that ownership of the ATM would be transferring to a 3rd party (Cardtronics UK) on 15 August.

The ATM has been out of action since then and Cardtronics UK have confirmed this occurred to due issues arising from the transfer of ownership.

Alasdair Allan MSP commented:“My office has been in touch with the new operators of the ATM and have been informed it should be back up and running by the end of today.

“However, it is frankly ridiculous that Tarbert has been again been left for a week without a functioning ATM during the tourist season.

“In June I wrote to the Bank outlining the problems that had occurred in previous summers and ask that steps be taken to ensure this didn’t again. If there was a possibility of problems occurring as a result of the handover then the right thing to do would have been to delay this or inform the community.”

Councillor John Mitchell commented: “In the Summer season the population of Harris virtually doubles and there are many Visitors from Home and Overseas who very much depend on a functioning ATM machine. In the past we have had to put up with mechanical failures as well as the machine running out of money - hardly surprising when the only remaining bank in Harris closes its doors at 3pm on Thursday and dies not open again until mid-morning on Monday. This is an absolutely essential service and every effort must be expended to ensure that this service enjoys a high level of reliability.”