RBS has announced the closure of 150 local branches, 128 of which will be of their Natwest subsidiary, causing the loss of around 700 jobs. This follows last months announcement in which the bank plans to save £750m by cutting costs, with the aim of getting back to profit for the first time since the financial crash.
This recent decision is attributed to the “dramatic shift” in banking habits of consumers, caused by the digitalisation of the financial industry. RBS have identified that since 2010, simple transactions in Natwest and RBS branches have declined by 43%, with online and mobile transactions rising by 400%. An RBS spokesman told the BBC that the number of people using their app has risen to to 4.2 million, up 2 million from the same time in 2014.
A spokesperson from the bank said the decision was made, “after careful consideration of a wide range of factors including regular branch usage and the alternative ways our customers can bank with us”. They also said “As customers change the way they bank with us, we must change the way we serve them. The role of the branch is fast moving to a center for advice, away from basic transactions. While the branch will still be a core part of our offering to customers, inevitably some branches will have to close. We know that some of our customers prefer to do their everyday banking face to face and we will help them with the alternative ways to bank in their community through our community bankers and NatWest or Royal Bank of Scotland TechXperts.”
With banks reducing costs, changing consumer habits and technological development, the reduction of brick and mortar operations and subsequent digitalisation is inevitable. Since 2015 over 1000 local bank branches have been closed, with RBS accounting for 191 of that total figure. Don’t be surprised if that number grows substantially over the next year.
Full list of affected Branches
London and South East
49 Bishopsgate, Bankside, Bayswater, Belgravia, Belsize Park, Cavendish Square, Cheshunt, East Finchley, Enfield Highway, Esher, Euston Road, Finchley Central, Great Portland Street, Hampstead Village, Hendon Church Road, Highbury & Islington, Kingsland, Maida Vale, Marble Arch, Mill Hill, Millbank, Parsons Green, Romford Collier Row, Shepperton, St. John’s Wood, Stamford Hill, Sunningdale, Teddington, Temple Fortune, Tower Bridge, Upminster, Wembley Park, Whetstone, Woodford Green
Midlands and East
Ashbourne, Belper, Biddulph, Bingham, Bourne, Buckingham, Burslem Stoke-on-Trent, Cheadle (Staffs), Daventry, Dronfield, Eastwood Nottingham, Felixstowe, Frinton-on-Sea, Hanley Festival Park, Haverhill, Horncastle, Kirkby-in-Ashfield, Lexden Colchester, Lincoln Newark Road, Matlock, Mickleover, Netherfield, Northampton St. James, Nottingham University, Olney, Ripley Derbyshire, Rugeley, Sleaford, Southwell, Staveley Chesterfield, Stoke-on-Trent, Stone Staffs, Stowmarket, Sutton Coldfield Wylde Green, Towcester, Trentham, Stoke-on-Trent, Washwood Heath, Woodbridge
Adel Leeds, Ambleside, Bingley, Bradford City Centre, Cockermouth, Colne, Droylsden, Eccles, Egremont, Formby, Frodsham, Grange-over-Sands, Haxby York, Heswall, Huyton, Keswick, Kirkby, Knaresborough, Liverpool One, Liverpool University, Manchester University Union, Millom, Otley, Ramsbottom, Selby, Settle, Tadcaster, Thirsk, Ulverston, Wigton
South West and Wales
Aberdare, Boscombe, Builth Wells, Burnham-on-Sea, Canford Cliffs Poole, Chandler’s Ford, Cheddar, Ebbw Vale, Ferndown, Hay-on-Wye, Hythe Southampton, Langport, Machynlleth, Monmouth, New Milton, Pontypool, Southampton London Road, Southampton Portswood, Warminster, Wellington Somerset, Welshpool, Westbourne Bournemouth, Wincanton, Winton Bournemouth, Worle, Ystrad Mynach
Anstruther, Banchory, Bishopbriggs, Blantyre, Buckie, Cowdenbeath, Cumnock, Cupar, Dalgety Bay, Denny, Forres, Girvan, Glasgow Alexandra Parade, Glasgow Anniesland Cross, Glasgow Burnside, Glasgow Crosshill, Glasgow Govan, Grangemouth, Kilsyth, Kirkcaldy Central, Leven, Mauchline, Newton Mearns, Newton Stewart, Prestwick, Stenhousemuir, Stonehaven, Troon, Westhill, Whitburn