The considerable anger and annoyance felt locally was very evident on Friday afternoon last when business people and local customers came together to protest at the closing of the AIB branch in Moville.

The decision, which will see the bank shut down after a 100 years in the town, has been described as ‘ludicrous’

With the closing of banks, garda stations, libraries and other services being closed many locals fear this latest closure is the thin end of the wedge.

Speaking as she handed in the petition, signed by 1,400 members of the local community, Diane McIntyre, Secretary of the East Inishowen Business Association, said they were demanding the decision to shut the local bank by the powers that be in Dublin be ‘overturned immediately.’

She said: “If this proposed closure is allowed to proceed AIB will have turned its back on the local community and businesses that have supported it since it first opened its doors in Moville more than 100 years ago.

“This branch has many thousands of account holders who now feel totally abandoned.

“Many account holders have a history of banking with this branch for generations. And the knock on effect of this closure will have a devastating effect on the remaining businesses in the town.”

Ms McIntyre was of the opinion the problems and challenges that AIB face nationally in 2012 were not as a a result of inappropriate conduct or wreckless lending practices in Moville yet it was this very community that was being punished.

“The management and staff in our branch hard working and committed to serving the community, and they are also being treated with total disregard for their futures by their masters.”

And she was not happy with the alternatives being offered by AIB either.

She commented; “Going to our nearest branch in Carndonagh will result in a minimum journey time of 90minutes out of working day for most local people on any given working day and that is not acceptable.

Ms McIntyre concluded: “Their famous advertising punchline ‘Be with AIB’ is ringing very hollow in our ears today.

“Given that the citizens and taxpayers in Ireland now effectively own AIB surely we are entitlted to have some input into the future of the organisation and have this ludicrous proposal scrapped.”

As yesterday was a Bank Holiday were were unable to get a response from AIB headquarters in Dublin.