Stonehaven branch of Clydesdale Bank to close

Clydesdale Bank has announced closures in the Lothians

Clydesdale Bank has announced closures in the Lothians

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The Stonehaven branch of Clydesdale Bank is to close.

Yesterday, Clydesdale Bank confirmed that it will close 40 branches in Scotland in 2017.

Among those to close is Stonehaven, which will shut on May 15.

The bank has listed Aberdeen Principal as the nearest branch for Stonehaven customers.

This follows the announcement in September 2016 by CYBG PLC, the parent company of Clydesdale Bank, that its branch network would be reducing as part of the bank’s strategy to create an integrated digital, mobile, telephone and branch service for its customers.

A statement posted on the on the CYBG PLC website yesterday read: “Since 2011, the number of customers using their bank for day-to-day transactions across the banking industry in the UK has fallen by a third.

“This ongoing decline in branch usage, married to a sharp and sustained increase in digital and mobile engagement, has driven a shift to providing greater access to day-to-day banking services remotely, on the move and outside of normal business hours.

“The bank continues to reshape its service offering in response to these changing needs.

“To support this transformation the bank is committing £350m over the next two years, embracing digital innovation while continuing to invest in a more sustainable branch network to deliver a superior customer experience.

“The benefits of this approach can already be seen through a significantly enhanced digital offering, a programme of new flagship branch openings and refurbishments.

“The bank’s first priority is to our customers and we will be working extensively with impacted customers, local communities and relevant stakeholders to ensure that the transition to their new branch is as smooth and as sensitive as possible, particularly where vulnerable customers are concerned.

“It is also the bank’s intention to try to find roles for frontline branch staff either within other branches or elsewhere in the bank, wherever possible.

“However, there will inevitably be employee number reductions as a result of these changes.

“We anticipate that around 200 Clydesdale Bank staff will be at risk of redundancy and subject to our redeployment process.

“All employees affected by these changes will be fully supported through the process.”

Gavin Opperman, customer banking director, Clydesdale Bank, added: “While the decision to close any branch is never an easy one, it is important that we, in line with other banks operating in the UK market, continue to respond to changes in the way customers want to bank with us.

“The changes announced today continue our journey towards a model that combines an enhanced digital platform with a right sized branch network; allowing customers to interact with us through a wide range of channels – mobile, online, telephone, in-branch – whenever and however they want.”

CYBG PLC also announced yesterday that 39 Yorkshire Bank branches in England would be closing.

Union Unite says it is “bitterly disappointed by the announcement from the Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank (CYB) to close 79 branches which will result in over 400 job losses”.

A statement from Unite said: “The decision by the bank to close one third of its branch network will be deeply devastating to the employees of the Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank.

“This is the largest ever closure plan embarked upon by CYB and will radically change the face of the bank.”Rob MacGregor, Unite national officer, added: “Staff across the Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank will be devastated to learn that 79 branches will close and consequently over 400 colleagues will lose their jobs.

“Unite is clear that the closure of a third of the bank’s branches will not only be concerning for staff but the local communities which will see their bank branch close.

“This cost cutting plan leaves customers with less choice for local banking.

“The union has called on the bank to give a commitment to mitigate compulsory redundancies where possible and that they will reconsider closing any bank branches that are the last bank in a town.

“Unite workplace representatives will be able to assist members over the coming days and weeks to support staff impacted by this announcement.”

Posters will be placed in each affected branch advising customers of the impending closure.

Written notification will be sent at least 12 weeks before any branch closes providing details to customers on the alternative ways of continuing to manage their accounts, including nearest branches, ATMs and Post Office counters - which Clydesdale Bank customers can use for day-to-day banking.

The Clydesdale Bank branches closing are: Aberdeen Riverside, Aberlour, Aboyne, Alloa, Banff, Bathgate, Bearsden, Beith, Bellshill, Brechin, Buckie, Cambuslang, Castle Douglas, Cumnock, Dalkeith, Dunoon, East Kilbride Stuart Street, Edinburgh Leith Walk, Edinburgh University, Forfar, Fraserburgh, Giffnock, Glasgow Aikenhead Road, Glasgow Bath Street, Glasgow Charing Cross, Grangemouth, Johnstone, Leith, Leven, Mintlaw, Renfrew, Rosyth, Rothesay, Saltcoats, South Queensferry, Stonehaven, Stranraer, Thurso, Tillicoultry and Troon.