NatWest says its Axminster bank is safe - for the time being

PUBLISHED: 07:05 07 June 2015 | UPDATED: 10:24 11 June 2015

Seaton's NatWest bank which is now closed - the Lyme Regis branch is soon to follow. Picture CHRIS CARSON

Seaton's NatWest bank which is now closed - the Lyme Regis branch is soon to follow. Picture CHRIS CARSON

Archant

Assurance comes after closure of Lyme Regis branch is announced following similar action in Seaton

NatWest Bank has reiterated it has no immediate plans to pull out of Axminster despite its on-going programme of branch closures across the area. The assurance came as officials announced they are shutting the Lyme Regis branch later this year.

NatWest closed its branch at Seaton some months ago despite a local campaign to retain it.

But an official told the Herald its previous statement regarding its presence in Axminster remained unchanged.

It said: “We have no current plans to close the Axminster branch, but we review our branch network regularly based on customer usage and what other facilities are in the area.”

Explaining the decision to pull out of Lyme Regis she said: “We have taken the difficult decision to close the branch on September 4.

“We will ensure there are a number of alternative ways for people in the area to continue to bank with us.

“We have reached an agreement with the local post office, so that our customers can check their balance, deposit and withdraw funds, and business customers can get coinage. There are three free-to-use ATMs within one mile of the branch.

“The number of transactions taking place at NatWest Lyme Regis branch has dropped by 14 per cent since 2011 and only 53 customers use the branch on a regular weekly basis. Twenty-five of these customers already use other branches in the area.

“We are writing to all of our customers who use the branch well in advance of the closure date, and will also display posters in the branch. We will work hard to engage with all of our customers, local businesses and the wider local community between now and the closure date to ensure they are aware of the alternative ways of accessing their banking with us in the local area, and to answer any questions. We are committed to following the UK Government protocol on branch closures, and we have made the decision following careful consideration of a wide range of factors.”

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