HSBC defends decision to close Clevedon branch
- Credit: Google
HSBC has defended its decision to close its Clevedon bank as part of its nationwide response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The branch, on Clevedon's Triangle, closed its doors on Friday (August 20) with all its staff members being relocated to nearby branches.
The company's media relations manager told the Times that the decision was not made lightly and that it believes there are accessible alternatives for residents.
Steve Gracey said: "We are extremely mindful of the impact branch closures have on individuals and communities and we do not take these decisions lightly.
"We work hard to ensure our customers are given clear information about what is happening and their options going forward.
"No redundancies took place as a result of the closure. All branch staff have been redeployed to other local branches.
"The next nearest branches are Portishead and Weston, although customers can carry out day-to-day transactions at their local post office. The nearest Post Office is one-minute walk from the site of the closed Clevedon branch."
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Weston's HSBC branch announced that it will become a digital-only service in November meaning over-the-counter transactions would have to be carried out elsewhere.
The nearest Post Office can be found on the Triangle, in Old Street.
In total, 82 branches have been closed across the country.
HSBC's head of network, Jackie Uhi said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has emphasised the need for the changes that we are making.
"It has not pushed us in a different direction but reinforces the things that we were focusing on before and has crystallised our thinking.
"This is a strategic direction that we need to take to have a branch network fit for the future.
“We know there will always be a need for face-to-face customer support and the evolution of our branches very much takes that into account.
"In recent years we have introduced more digital options to make our customers’ lives easier - depositing cheques or putting a temporary block on a card, for example – and we know that customers are becoming more comfortable primarily using online and mobile banking to take control of their finances, turning to other channels for very particular interactions."