TSB deals 'bitter blow' to the High Street as it axes another 70 bank branches

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TSB deals 'bitter blow' to the High Street as it axes another 70 bank branches
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TSB dealt a ‘bitter blow’ to Britain’s high streets as it axed another 70 bank branches.

The latest closures take the total branches it has culled to 330 in four years, and puts 150 jobs at risk.

The Spanish-owned bank said it hoped to find all of the staff new roles but it was unable to confirm whether they had the right skills, or were in the right locations, to take up the posts on offer.

TSB deals 'bitter blow' to the High Street as it axes another 70 bank branches
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Some 4,369 bank branch closures across all lenders have been announced since the start of 2019.

TSB chief customer officer Robin Bulloch said: ‘Closing branches is an incredibly difficult decision to take, but we have to respond to the changes in the way people bank and provide the right mix of services for all our customers.

Clearing bank launch 

A new institution set up to process payments has opened its doors.

Bank of London is only the second ‘clearing bank’ to launch in the UK in 250 years – to handle the ‘plumbing’ of the financial system, settling transactions between banks.

It was feared that Brexit would weaken London’s hold on this market but founder Anthony Watson said: ‘The UK created the industrial revolution. We’ve never been a member of the euro yet we clear 70 per cent of euros in the world.

‘Two and a half times more dollars flow through London than New York. London is the financial centre of the world.’

‘These changes allow us to maintain an extensive branch presence across the country. 

‘They are accompanied by a significant investment to upgrade branches to better suit customer needs. Where it takes longer to get to the nearest branch, we will introduce more ‘pop-up’ services.’

TSB will still have 220 branches, and said none of the those to shut would have been the last branch in town. 

It blamed the closures on customers switching to online banking. But customers blasted it for taking advantage of the pandemic to cut costs.

Beth Murray said on Twitter: ‘Declining branch use … over the last two years? I wonder why that could be?’

Sharon Graham, general secretary at union Unite, said it was a ‘bitter blow’, adding: ‘Unite remains very concerned by the drastic cuts in the numbers of branches across the whole banking sector, and we call on the Government and the banking regulators to step in urgently to ensure cash remains readily available in all communities.’

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