TSB urged to re-consider Stornoway closure

​A decision by the TSB bank to close 36 branches across the UK – including in Stornoway – has been condemned by the union representing the company’s staff.

The bank announced the move last week, with the closure programme taking place from September to May next year.

A TSB spokesperson said about 96% of all the bank's transactions now take place outside of a branch, with the number of in-store transactions falling by 43% over the past four years.

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They said: "The decision to close a branch is never taken lightly, but our customers are now doing most of their banking digitally and we need to move to a better balance of digital and face-to-face services."

Unite regional officer, Andy Case, said: "Through extensive negotiations Unite has been able to substantially reduce the number of jobs at risk. However, that isn't sufficient and the union is pressing TSB to urgently reconsider.”

Scottish Conservative list MSP for Highlands and Islands Tim Eagle shared his frustrations about the news and how it will affect the island going forward.

He said this “will be a bitter blow for Stornoway, as well as the bank’s dedicated staff and customers” and leave people with “fewer local banking options” .

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“Given that the nearest TSB branch is in Inverness, it will most likely mean that many will face the inconvenience of changing to another provider, unless TSB are able to offer any long-term contingency measures.

“I have written to TSB to ask them to provide detail of the reasons for this closure, and to ask that they reconsider this short-sighted move.”