Published: Sat, December 02, 2017
Economy | By Melissa Porter

Dinnington's NatWest bank set for the axe

Dinnington's NatWest bank set for the axe

The company, which has not announced when the closures will take place, said it was moving towards a non-branch model as more customers than ever were choosing to use online or mobile banking services.

The group, which remains 72% taxpayer-owned after its rescue during the financial crisis, said 62 locations in Scotland under its RBS brand would shut, as well as 197 NatWest sites in England and Wales.

"It is bad enough that people in Barra and Vatersay will be unable to have face-to-face contact with their bank, other than by possible occasional visits by a mobile van, but RBS also seem to be saying they will be withdrawing their cash machine, the only one on the island".

Unite, the UK's largest union, representing staff across RBS, accused the taxpayer backed bank of decimating its branch network and betraying communities.

The cuts mean RBS will lose two-fifths of its Scottish branches (dropping to 89), while 655 NatWest locations will remain. In England and Wales the number of NatWest branches will fall to 655.

There will be a total of around 680 redundancies, RBS said.

RBS said it would try to ensure compulsory redundancies were "kept to an absolute minimum". Since 2014 the number of customers using our branches across the United Kingdom has fallen by 40% and mobile transactions have increased by 73% over the same period.

The bank has pointed to the rise in mobile apps and online banking for the 40 per cent reduction in brick and mortar branches.

"This announcement will forever change the face of banking in this country resulting in over a thousand staff losing their jobs and hundreds of high streets without any banking facilities".

The closures and job cuts follow similar moves by Lloyds and Yorkshire Building Society earlier this week. "Fifty-eight per cent of customers are now choosing to bank digitally with us on a regular basis instead".

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