Stamford NatWest to close in May

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The Stamford branch of NatWest will close next May after the national firm said the way customers bank had changed.

The closure is one of 250 branch closures across the country by NatWest and Royal Bank of Scotland.

The bank in the High Street will close its doors on May 17, 2018. Four people are employed there.

A spokesman for NatWest said that whilst it had beeen a “difficult decision”, the way people bank with the firm had “changed radically”.

Since 2014, the number of customers using NatWest branches has fallen by 40 per cent and during the same period, mobile transactions have increased by 73 per cent.

The spokeman added: “Since 2012 we have seen the way in which people use NatWest Stamford branch change dramatically, with now 89 per cent of customers already banking in other ways locally.

“Transactions in NatWest Stamford branch have reduced by 42 per cent since 2012 with now only 66 customers visiting the branch on a weekly basis. Sixty-five per cent of customers are now choosing to bank digitally with us on a regular basis instead.”

She went onto say that the branch would be communicating with customers affected by the closure and contacting vulnerable customers and regular branch users.

She said there was a six-month window between the announcement and closure to ensure all customers were given support during the “trnasition”.

She added: “We are committed to ensuring our customers and communities are able to continue accessing quality banking services. As part of this, our new Community Banker provides customers with personal assistance and support to access our non-cash services, as well as help with achieving their financial plans and goals – replicating many of the services available in our branches.

“Our Community Bankers will get to know the local community, engage with local groups and provide training and education on issues such as fraud and scams protection in the local area.”

NatWest is also creating a “specialist taskforce” of technology experts to help customers who were uncomfortable or unfamiliar with online or mobile banking.

The spokesman said the bank was supporting the affected staff and compulsory redundancies would be kept to an “absolute minimum”.

The closure of the Stamford branch of NatWest follows the closure of the Bourne branch in September and the Oakham branch in June.

On the same day NatWest made its announcement, Peterborough-based travel agent Thomas Cook also announced the closure of 50 stores across the country. The Stamford branch is not one of those affected.