Chi Onwurah MP for Newcastle Central which includes the Head Quarters of Northern Rock stated:
“I’m pleased that the staff and families of Northern Rock now know their jobs are secure after four years of uncertainty and redundancies. I’m also pleased by the commitments Virgin Money have given to retain the HQ in Newcastle”.
“Their Chief Executive has written to me to say they have great respect for the heritage and community focus of Northern Rock. I will speak with her and am keen to work with her to ensure Newcastle is at the centre of a vibrant banking business”.
“Virgin money have also assured me that they will now extend the Northern Rock contributions to the Northern Rock Foundation to the end of 2013, which provides very important support to many organisations in the North East, which do so much for our communities”.
But Ms Onwurah added:
“ I am concerned Tory led Coalition are selling the bank at a 400m loss and that their refusal to look seriously at a cooperative model means they are out of touch with the British people’s desire for a longer term, sustainable banking model”.
“I also want to know why it was announced today, when Parliament is not sitting, and I can’t ask Osborne these questions on behalf of the people of Newcastle”.
Chi also believes that the Chancellor’s reckless decision to cut spending and raise taxes too far and too fast meant the Government not given itself time to consider the need for greater diversity and competition in the banking sector and given no serious thought to making Northern Rock back into a building society or mutual.