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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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Townsfolk urge Cumberland Building Society to step up branch security

More than 500 people have called on building society bosses to step up security following a robbery.

Residents in Silloth have signed a petition demanding action from The Cumberland Building Society.

They say they are concerned about security after a man was charged with carrying out an armed robbery at the town branch last month.

The petition was presented yesterday to staff at the building society, which has branches across Cumbria and Dumfriesshire.

In a statement issued afterwards, organisers stated: “The people of Silloth believe that there should be greater security at The Cumberland Building Society in all of its branches.

“We believe that screens should be fitted to the counters, as staff safety has to be seen as the greatest importance. A message has to be sent out that just because we are a quiet seaside town we are not an easy target.

“The staff are all local and the fall-out from the recent incident has been felt right around the tight-knit community in the town.

“We feel that people’s lives and well-being have got to be worth more than the cost of fitting added security to protect them.”

Mark Byrne, assistant general manager at The Cumberland Building Society, said: “We appreciate and share the concerns of the people of Silloth.

“The welfare and security of our staff and customers is of paramount importance to us and we take incidents like this very seriously.

“Our branches have a significant range of security systems in place, about which we are clearly unable to comment.

“However, following any security incident we carry out a full review of all procedures and security systems, and this is currently underway following the robbery at Silloth.”

  • A 25-year-old man accused of an armed bank robbery at The Cumberland Building Society in Silloth has appeared in court. Robert Phillips, of The Croft, Silloth, is accused of threatening staff at the branch in Station Road, Silloth, with a knife and taking £1,511 on February 27. He was remanded in custody and the case adjourned.

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