Banking giant Abbey today insisted it was committed to Bradford - by unveiling a new set of charitable priorities for its community work in the district.

The embattled bank last week announced it was axing 74 jobs in Bradford as part of a move to shift some work to call centres in India.

But Abbey, which still employs more than 2,000 at its Bradford northern headquarters, stressed it was committed to the city as one of five regional centres.

And the latest part of its on-going business review outlines how the company intends to play an active role in the community.

A spokesman said: "These charitable priorities are designed to continue to support local communities, particularly in Bradford where Abbey has a significant presence."

The priorities, which will dictate which charities the Abbey Charitable Trust supports, are in three areas: education and training; regeneration; and financial advice.

Abbey's Charitable Trust was set up in 1990 and has since given £15 million to charity. Last year more than £583,800 was given to charities supported by staff through the Matched Donation Scheme.

Bradford is one of nine areas where the company has employee charity groups.

"These groups are central to our community involvement and are involved in the many of the donations we make to local charities," said the spokesman.

"The trust donates amounts ranging from £500-£20,000, and these can be in response to direct requests from charities or to appeals passed on by branches, subsidiaries or other departments."

One of the areas the company is keen to address is financial support for disadvantaged people to help them take control of their money and make informed financial decisions.

Alan Eagle, charitable trust manager at Abbey, said: "These new priorities fit very closely with our new brand values. Through education, training and financial advice, we want to continually improve the way disadvantaged people relate to their money."

For more information about Abbey's community programme, call 0870 6080104 or visit