Scotland business

RBS to close another 30 Scottish branches

RBS branch Image copyright Getty Images

RBS has announced that it is shutting 30 more Scottish branches.

RBS, which has already closed dozens of branches in Scotland since 2015, said 176 full-time posts would be affected.

It added that the move was in response to the growing popularity of mobile and online banking.

The union Unite reacted angrily, claiming RBS was "turning its back on the communities that have been the foundation of their business for generations".

In addition to the Scottish closures, RBS announced it would shut 128 NatWest branches.

A total of about 770 staff across the UK will be affected but hundreds of workers will be redeployed, the bank said.


Image copyright RBS

RBS branches earmarked for closure:

  • 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

An RBS spokesman said many more customers now preferred using mobile and online services over traditional branch counters.

He said: "We interact with our customers over 20 times more through digital channels than physical ones.

"Half of our personal customers in Scotland are mobile banking users - grown from 500,000 to 900,000 since 2014.

"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 centre 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."

'Bad news'

Reacting to the news, Unite regional officer Lyn Turner said: "RBS is turning its back on the communities that have been the foundation of their business for generations.

"That's bad news for our members who now have to live with the threat of redundancy - and it's bad news for customers and businesses.

"Banks have a duty to the wider community and that is especially the case for banks like RBS that have large taxpayer-owned shareholdings."

The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) said it was "frustrated to see RBS show so little loyalty to our high streets".

Scottish policy convener Andy Willox added: "Branch closures put pressure on local economies and make it harder for local firms to access banking services.

"While more people might be doing online banking, that's no good for cash-based businesses or for rural firms with poor broadband.

"As the big banks shut down branches in chorus, it unfortunately seems like the banking industry is content to leave some customers behind."

After the closures 151 RBS branches will remain.

The bank remains majority-owned by taxpayers, following its multi-billion government bailout almost a decade ago.

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