In normal circumstances, one might have little sympathy for a bank which cancelled a Christmas party because an MP criticised them.

MPs are supposed to be influential, but not to the extent they tell a major business when to put up the tinsel.

But the majority shareholder in Royal Bank of Scotland is now the government, which owns the bulk of the shares. And the bank appears to have taken the sensible decision it had to respond to the criticism, in an effort to salvage the reputation of the sector.

Hence, it has taken action to reduce the number of repossessions, by giving defaulters a period of grace before taking action. So it’s not a great surprise that Royal Bank of Scotland scrapped its Christmas party when a local MP attacked them for it.

The difficulty was that it had already booked the venue – and is now being accused of breaking a contract. It seems that Royal Bank of Scotland just can’t win.

It’s understandable that Nailcote Hall owner Rick Cressman is angry on behalf of his staff and his business, but he also raises an important point which effects the entire economy.

The bank was criticised for perceived extravagance at a time when many people are tightening their belts, but it is important that organisations and individuals continue spending money.

In fact, it seems the bank planned only to offer a fairly modest subsidy for a staff party which would be paid for mainly by employees themselves.

But regardless of who paid, there’s nothing wrong with a little festive cheer, even in difficult times.

An office party gives people a break from some of the depressing news hitting every sector of industry today – and it might help keep the economy moving too.