MSE News: 193 bank branches to close next year – check if yours is on the list, plus alternatives

High street banks including HSBC, NatWest and Lloyds are set to close at least 193 more branches next year – we've rounded up the planned closures for each bank and what the alternatives are if you still want face-to-face banking.

Read the full story:
'193 high street banks to close next year – check if yours is on the list, plus alternatives'

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  • WillPS
    WillPS Posts: 3,049
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    @MSE_Petar you should probably mention in your article that Natwest customers can use nearby Royal Bank of Scotland branches as they previously used their Natwest branch, particularly with relation to the many Scottish branches which are closing as they duplicate a nearby RBS.
  • MSE_Petar
    MSE_Petar Posts: 325
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    Hi @WillPS

    Thanks for flagging this – good shout.

    We've now updated the article after confirming this with NatWest.

    Best,
    MSE Petar
  • jbrassy
    jbrassy Posts: 641
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    Went into a bank branch for the first time in years last Saturday. Had to show my ID at Barclays in Lewisham to verify myself for a mortgage application. Absolutely shocking service. Had to wait over an hour to be seen. Won't shed a tear if that place closed and everything was moved online.
  • The good news is that we finally have a wave of bank closures that doesn't close any of the branches I use. The bad news is that this is because most of the banks near me have already shut their doors.
  • jbrassy said:
    Went into a bank branch for the first time in years last Saturday. Had to show my ID at Barclays in Lewisham to verify myself for a mortgage application. Absolutely shocking service. Had to wait over an hour to be seen. Won't shed a tear if that place closed and everything was moved online.

    Although that wait is uncceptable, how would you verify yourself without an alternative? Travel to a different branch or forfeit the mortgage?
  • ForumUser7
    ForumUser7 Posts: 2,050
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    jbrassy said:
    Went into a bank branch for the first time in years last Saturday. Had to show my ID at Barclays in Lewisham to verify myself for a mortgage application. Absolutely shocking service. Had to wait over an hour to be seen. Won't shed a tear if that place closed and everything was moved online.

    Although that wait is uncceptable, how would you verify yourself without an alternative? Travel to a different branch or forfeit the mortgage?
    It would be better if they used a platform like DigiDocs, or HooYu to allow people to upload and verify documentation (incl ID) online
    If you want me to definitely see your reply, please tag me @forumuser7 Thank you.

    N.B. (Amended from Forum Rules): You must investigate, and check several times, before you make any decisions or take any action based on any information you glean from any of my content, as nothing I post is advice, rather it is personal opinion and is solely for discussion purposes. I research before my posts, and I never intend to share anything that is misleading, misinforming, or out of date, but don't rely on everything you read. Some of the information changes quickly, is my own opinion or may be incorrect. Verify anything you read before acting on it to protect yourself because you are responsible for any action you consequently make... DYOR, YMMV etc.
  • Bridlington1
    Bridlington1 Posts: 2,142
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    edited 23 December 2022 at 5:38PM
    jbrassy said:
    Went into a bank branch for the first time in years last Saturday. Had to show my ID at Barclays in Lewisham to verify myself for a mortgage application. Absolutely shocking service. Had to wait over an hour to be seen. Won't shed a tear if that place closed and everything was moved online.

    Although that wait is uncceptable, how would you verify yourself without an alternative? Travel to a different branch or forfeit the mortgage?
    It would be better if they used a platform like DigiDocs, or HooYu to allow people to upload and verify documentation (incl ID) online
    That's if online verification works as planned. I remember having to use HooYu to verify my identity earlier this year when I opened a Natwest, a RBS and a Virgin Money current account in the space of a week, what a palava. On all 3 occasions I spent over half an hour (just over an hour on one occasion) trying to get it to accept a picture of my passport and that I was a real human. It is very fussy with lighting, not working well if it's cloudy and refusing to work point blank if it's dark outside. It would have probably been quicker and certainly easier to go to my local branch with ID.

    Edit:
    How can I forget the TSB affair. I had to use Adobesign to prove my ID when TSB kept locking me out of online banking. When I tried submitting my ID it kept giving me the “spiral of doom” for 10 minutes then timing me out. I then had to go into branch, they uploaded my ID onto the system and told me to go ring them. When I rang them they told me there was no evidence I'd been into branch and that I could email them a photo of my passport.
  • Rob5342
    Rob5342 Posts: 1,359
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    It's hardly worth reporting any more, nearly everyone banks online and it's pretty obvious that banks will keep closing branches.
  • Rob5342 said:
    It's hardly worth reporting any more, nearly everyone banks online and it's pretty obvious that banks will keep closing branches.
    The issue is for those who for whatever reason can't bank online, particularly the elderly. There are people I know who don't even have access to the internet let alone a smartphone or computer. If the banks close their branches they are not going to be able to do their day to day banking full stop.

    Furthermore branches are quite often the easiest and sometimes only way to get issues resolved. I use online banking nearly all of the time but there have been instances when I've needed to visit a branch in the past year, i.e. applying for the Santander £160 switch offer as an existing Santander customer, getting the Santander account converted into a student account for stoozing purposes, TSB having a technical meltdown requiring me to visit a branch for verifying ID etc. 
  • I'm fortunate to live within a 5-minute walk of 12 different branches (where I have accounts), all of which will surprisingly survive next year's purging. It used to be 13 until RBS closed earlier this year, but NatWest is a 1-minute walk away. Foot traffic still appears to be consistent and relatively high during peak hours, and all the banks (plus Nationwide) are open on Saturdays. The primary benefit for me is bypassing snail mail with a branch visit (assuming online/mobile banking isn't an option).

    I don't expect all these branches to remain open over the next 10 years. Eventually, once every generation alive has been raised on smart devices and older systems are upgraded and further developed, most banks will be similar to Monzo and Starling (but with superior accessibility from additional operating systems).
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