Anger as RBS won’t listen to customers

RBS will close its Bellshill branch on June 11 and its Tannochside branch three days later
RBS will close its Bellshill branch on June 11 and its Tannochside branch three days later

Bellshill and Uddingston MSP Richard Lyle has expressed his anger at RBS for refusing to reconsider closing its Bellshill and Tannochside branches.

According to RBS, an average of 96 customers visit the Bellshill branch each week and 55 go to Tannochside. Mr Lyle has disputed these figures and wrote to chief executive Ross McEwan urging a rethink.

Mr Lyle also collected a petition with hundreds of signatures, and while the bank has acknowledged the strength of feeling locally it won’t budge.

In a letter to Mr Lyle, Les Matheson, CEO of Personal and Business Banking, wrote: “I do understand your disappointment with our decision. The strength of feeling on this decision is clear from the petition and number of signatures on it from local customers and residents.

“I appreciate how much the branch means to the community and that our decision has saddened a lot of people. We have considered this decision very carefully and won’t be revising it.”

Bellshill and Tannochside will shut on June 11 and June 14 respectively, and the bank has offered to ‘train’ customers in alternatives.

Mr Matheson wrote: “We are communicating with our customers affected by the closure of the branches and proactively contacting vulnerable customers and regular branch users.

“We know not all of our customers are comfortable or familiar with using online or mobile banking, so we have created a new specialist taskforce who will be dedicated to providing our customers with training and support with digital skills until the branches close.”

Mr Lyle believes as the bank was bailed out by taxpayer money it should listen to the needs of the public more.

He said: “I am angry that a bank which is mainly owned by the taxpaper will not listen to the needs of local residents.

“Previously having worked for RBS I always had a high regard for the bank, on this occasion I feel let down.”