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Royal Bank of Scotland to shut 259 branches in 2018

Find out if your local bank is closing down.

Royal Bank of Scotland to shut 259 branches in 2018

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) has announced plans to shut down a quarter of its branch network by June 2018.

The bank – which is 72%-owned by taxpayers – will close a total of 259 branches over the next six months, as it says more customers prefer to bank online. Just 744 branches will remain for people wanting to bank in person.

The closures will include 62 RBS and 197 NatWest branches, plus 11 Ulster Bank branches which were previously announced.

Which? reveals the location of all the branches earmarked for closure over next year.

The RBS, NatWest and Ulster branches to be axed

Here’s a full list of the NatWest, RBS, Ulster Bank branches that will close by June 2018.

You can search the table below to check if your local branch will be disappearing and the scheduled date of closure.

Why bank branches are disappearing

RBS claims the decision to shed a significant portion of its network is driven by the changing way people use their bank.

An RBS spokesperson said: “More and more of our customers are choosing to do their everyday banking online or on mobile.

‘Since 2014 the number of customers using our branches across the UK has fallen by 40% and mobile transactions have increased by 73% over the same period. Over 5 million customers now use our mobile banking app and one in five only bank with us digitally.

‘We realise this is difficult news for our colleagues and we are doing everything we can to support those affected.’

Indeed, it’s not the only bank that’s closing branches.

Earlier this week, Lloyds Banking Group announced a further 49 branches would be shut next year – including six Halifax branches, 11 Bank of Scotland branches and 32 Lloyds Bank branches.

Over the past two years, all the major banks have scaled back their presence on the high street.

What to do if you’re impacted

If your local RBS, NatWest or Ulster branch is closing down, you could do most of your everyday banking with the Post Office.

There are 11,600 Post Office branches across the UK, which offer longer and more convenient opening hours – with over 4,000 branches open on Sundays.

RBS says that it is writing to affected customers to highlight the alternative ways to bank in their area.

It also says it has a fleet of mobile branches, which serves 603 communities.

The bank is catering for those that may not be as tech-savvy with a ‘specialist taskforce’ called TechXperts, to support those that haven’t yet tried online banking.

A RBS spokesperson said: “We’re providing our customers with more ways to bank than ever before – they can choose from a range of digital, to face-to-face options.

“As customers continue to change the way they bank with us, we must change the way we serve them, so we are investing in our more popular branches and shaping our network, replacing traditional bricks and mortar branches with alternative ways to bank, including; Community Bankers, Mobile Bank on Wheels, and Post Offices, so that we can reach even more customers.”

How to join the online banking revolution

Which? has guides on the best and worst banks based on things like customer services – but we’ve also dived into the best and worst for online banking security to help those that want to make the most informed decision about joining the digital revolution.


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