Use it or lose another bank Lanark is told

The TSB intends to cut its opening times at its Lanark branch from July.
The TSB intends to cut its opening times at its Lanark branch from July.

A Lanark councillor has expressed alarm over the TSB’s plans to slash the opening hours of their branch in Bannatyne Street.

However, the bank has responded by claiming that complete closure was the only alternative to the cut.

Councillor Julia Marrs was alerted to the changes from the end of July by a bank customer and constituent.

She said: “I was advised that the Lanark branch will be reducing their opening hours from end of July 2019 after customer usage of the branch dropped by 4% in comparison to a year ago. The TSB say that 78% of customers are using another branches, digital or telephone banking to access their services.

“Rather than close the branch, TSB are reducing opening hours which will mean that the branch will now be open on Monday, Tuesday and Friday from 9.30am to 12.30pm and 1.30pm to 4.30pm

“I have written to TSB expressed my deep concern for banking facilities in our town centre, especially following plans by Santander to close their branch and my disappointment that after a reduction of services available - which myself as a TSB customer had noted over recent months - it naturally follows that a reduction in footfall has occurred “

TSB have responded saying that that this was a business decision and future footfall is critical to future viability. TSB also said there was potential for the situation to be reviewed, saying “In order for the branch to be viable in the long-term, however, we will need to see customers choosing to bank in these branches.

“This is very much our ambition and if footfall does increase, we will consider increasing opening hours to meet demand.”

Councillor Marrs responded: ““It’s vital for our local economy that we maintain banking services in our rural areas, with Lanark no exception.

“My advice to local customers is to ‘use it or lose it’.”

Lanark recently lost its Clydesdale Bank branch and several RBS village branches have closed.