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Barclays bank tells councillor to resend Welsh language message in English

02 Dec 2021 3 minutes Read
Barclays UK HQ. By GroupEditor (CC 4.0)

Barclays bank has come under fire for telling a councillor to resend a Welsh language message in English.

The London-headquartered multinational has been criticised by Plaid Cymru MS, Mabon ap Gwynfor, for its response to the Deputy Leader of Gwynedd Council, Dafydd Meurig.

The message from Barclays said: “Hi, I’m really sorry we’re not able to translate your message here. Please can you send this again in English. – Aime”.

In response, Mabon ap Gwynfor, the Plaid Cymru MS for Dwyfor Meirionnydd said: “While the big companies are closing high street banks and pushing people online, this response shows how Welsh language communities are going to lose out. Online banking isn’t available in Welsh, without mentioning customer care through forums like this.”

‘Ditch the bank’ 

Dafydd Meurig told Barclays that he was telling Gwynedd Council to ditch the bank in favour of the Welsh cooperative Banc Cambria, which is in the process of being set up.

This was in response to Barclays shutting branches in Porthmadog and Caernarfon.

According to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, Cllr Nia Jeffreys has criticised Barclays, claiming “they put profit before people.”

In an open letter on the matter, Mabon ap Gwynfor MS said: “Banks have been ripped out of our towns at an astounding rate, which shows no regard for the people who have helped banks make huge profits.

“Barclays has already shut 63 branches this year.

“According to the Financial Conduct Authority, people in Wales are most likely to have to travel large distances to get to a bank branch: 7.5 per cent of residences are more than 16km away.”

Liz Saville Roberts, the MP for Dwyfor Meirionnydd, added: “I completely disagree with Barclays’ advice that all customers should move to online banking because not everybody has access to a reliable internet connection, particularly in rural areas like parts of Dwyfor Meirionnydd where reliable digital connectivity is a problem.

“Many older people are also reluctant to use the internet for any financial matters.

“Ending banking services in Porthmadog will have an adverse impact on businesses and individuals in the town and surrounding communities.”

‘Never an easy one’

A Barclays spokesperson told the Daily Post: “The decision to close a branch is never an easy one. However, customers are increasingly using alternatives to branches to do their banking. As a result, we are seeing a sustained fall in branch visits across the UK.

“This is reflected at the Porthmadog branch where there has been a 13 per cent reduction in counter transactions in the two years to March 2020. In addition, 81 per cent of our customers at the branch are also using different ways to bank.

“This is reflected at the Caernarfon branch where there has been a 26 per cent reduction in counter transactions in the two years to March 2020. In addition, 81 per cent of our customers at the branch are also using different ways to bank.

“We will work with our customers and provide alternative options to ensure they can continue to manage their money and receive financial expertise when required.”


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Dai Rob
Dai Rob
7 months ago

They are closing their Port Talbot branch….so I will enjoy walking in to ytransfer my account to somewhere else. FCUK em!

Morris Dean
Morris Dean
7 months ago
Reply to  Dai Rob

Banc Cambria can’t come soon enough

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
7 months ago
Reply to  Morris Dean

Deffo!

Rhian Davies
Rhian Davies
7 months ago

This is very interesting

Glyn Jones
Glyn Jones
7 months ago

Prysured y dydd y sefydlir Banc Cambria. Dyma’r ffordd. Adeiladu cenedl o’r llwch.

Jack Bryn
Jack Bryn
7 months ago

The quicker we have access to Banc Cambria the better. Too many examples of these multinationals disrespecting our language and culture. They don’t get us, so why should they get our money.

Andrew
Andrew
7 months ago

Black Rock are major shareholders in Barclays and most other banks and global institution’s. They have tentacles that permiate throughout every aspect of our financial lives. From mortgages to pensions and way beyond. They control markets, governments economies and impact upon us in ways we could never imagine. The banks are not our friends. Then only exist as a result of mass consent. Spread the word about our own bank,it sounds like a great idea.

Geoff Horton-Jones
Geoff Horton-Jones
7 months ago

Behind all this is the process of centralizing banking into English hands
Supporting charities ?? How many insist we send our money to English addresses.

hdavies15
hdavies15
7 months ago

… and at those H.Q’s how many are paying CEO’s and other “top jobs” seriously big bucks ? Charities like so many other bodies have been taken over by the kleptocratic elite who feel entitled to fill their personal coffers before funding the missions of their charitable organisation.

Malcolm rj
Malcolm rj
7 months ago

Just ditch the bank they take their profits to London and put nothing back in the local area

Y Cymro
Y Cymro
7 months ago

It’s not like Barclays is short of cash seeing it got bailed out by taxpayers cash, Welsh included., after the 2008 world bank crash. No amount of excuses will hide the fact that they are neglecting their duty to provide Welsh language services under the Welsh language act, even more ironic, are going against their own Welsh language policy as detailed on their website. Below is Barclays Welsh language policy. Duw? 🙄 “We’re committed to the communities we operate in and use the Welsh language along with English within Wales. Our bilingual policy sets out our general guiding principles in… Read more »

Last edited 7 months ago by Y Cymro
Charles L. Gallagher
Charles L. Gallagher
7 months ago

Willing to bet that you’d got a reply if you sent it in Hindi or similar!!!

hdavies15
hdavies15
7 months ago

Ah, that side of their transactions is handled by their Woke, Inclusive and Diversity Division. Wales is still managed by their Colonial Affairs Department !

Grayham Jones
7 months ago

Get wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 to get it’s one banks kick out all English banks we
In wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿 have got to stop being little Englanders and be proud to be welsh it’s time for a new wales 🏴󠁧󠁢󠁷󠁬󠁳󠁿

Morris Dean
Morris Dean
7 months ago
Reply to  Grayham Jones

Yawn

Caroline L Royle
Caroline L Royle
7 months ago
Reply to  Grayham Jones

Complete knob

Malcolm rj
Malcolm rj
7 months ago

I DIDN’T KNOW ABOUT THE NEW BANK COMING TO WALES THE SOONER THE BETTER I’LL TRANSFER ALL THE ACCOUNTS THAT I HAVE STRAIGHT AWAY

Penderyn
Penderyn
7 months ago

Remember kids

It’s called the Bank of England and not the Bank of Britain for a good reason.

Welsh_Siôn
Welsh_Siôn
7 months ago

The message from Barclays said: “Hi, I’m really sorry we’re not able to translate your message here. Please can you send this again in English. – Aime”. _______ Whadyamean? I’ve professionally translated a lot of your [Barclays] stuff into Cymraeg from English, including customer advice sheets. I also, as the saying may go, swing both ways and translate stuff into English from Cymraeg. There may well not be similar colleagues based in Barclays Towers, but surely its not beyond the wit of an employee of the bank to recruit someone or a translation company to do this work. Not only… Read more »

Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
7 months ago

This could have just been a bit of anti-Welsh petulance and awkwardness from a staff member. If it’s representative of a more systemic attitude at Barclay Towers, then they’ve only themselves to blame if they start haemhorraging customers, to the benefit of Banc Cambria.

Gwynfryn Evans
Gwynfryn Evans
7 months ago

The headline to this article is disingenuous. For a start, they didn’t tell the man to resend his communication in English. They asked, apologetically, to do so – and respectfully, too. I know there are romanticism who fool themselves into believing that we all speak Welsh, and we are all given name such as Llinos Medi or Gwern ap Aled, but we don’t . When everyone in Wales speaks English – I refuse to believe that there are monoglot Welsh men and women, as some sources would have us believe -I think the Barclays request was not unreasonable. By my… Read more »

Gwynfryn Evans
Gwynfryn Evans
7 months ago

It will be clear from my previous post that predictive text doesn’t recognise English, either.

hdavies15
hdavies15
7 months ago
Reply to  Gwynfryn Evans

The inferiority complex is most evident when we respond to requests for English without dissent ! The Scots had a different problem – their language was in an even more parlous state than ours.

Llinos
7 months ago

sa’n dipyn o dolc petae pob cyngor yn cau eu cyfrifon efo’r banc buasa??

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