‘People need to know Reepham is open for business again’ – traders celebrate return of raid-hit bank
PUBLISHED: 16:19 26 October 2012 | UPDATED: 16:35 26 October 2012
Reepham is open for business again after a bank that shut for five months when thieves ripped an ATM out of its wall re-opened its doors.
That was the message from relieved local traders who welcomed staff of the HSBC back to the Market Place branch with a bunch of flowers.
The bank had been closed since raiders caused serious damage to the front of the branch in a meticulously-planned late-night raid on May 16.
Local businesses said they suffered an immediate financial impact as shoppers who combined banking and shopping on their visits to Reepham decided to go to other towns instead.
Diane Turner of Diane’s Pantry said: “We were down on sales and we were definitely down on footfall. The square was quite often empty and there were not many cars around. It was quite worrying.
“I think we were very fortunate that they have come back to us. We have got to be very thankful for that.”
James Ellis of Reepham Chamber of Commerce said: “Now they are open we can see stuff picking up already. We just want people to come back. People need to know that we are open for business again.”
The bank had to use specific bricks as it is in a conservation area, and has installed CCTV and two bollards in front of the cash machine.