// TSB to cut 900 high street jobs through the closure of 164 branches
// TSB will be left with 290 branches around the UK after the latest cuts
// TSB has halved its high street branch network over the last seven years
TSB has revealed plans to axe around 900 high street jobs and close 164 of its branches, delivering the latest blow to UK high streets since the Covid-19 pandemic started.
The Spanish-owned bank said the cuts were driven by a “significant shift in customer behaviour”, as fewer people use branches and instead favour online banking.
The high street bank, which is based in Edinburgh, had previously said it intended to reduce the size of its branch network but it has now accelerated plans amid the pandemic.
It will leave the bank with 290 branches, more than halving its store estate over the past seven years.
“Closing any of our branches is never an easy decision, but our customers are banking differently – with a marked shift to digital banking,” TSB chief executive Debbie Crosbie said.
“We are reshaping our business to transform the customer experience and set us up for the future.
“This means having the right balance between branches on the high street and our digital platforms, enabling us to offer the very best experience for our personal and business customers across the UK.
“We remain committed to our branch network and will retain one of the largest in the UK.”
The firm said the cuts are being made across its high street branch network, as well as in its mortgages and customer service operations teams.
TSB customer banking director Robin Bulloch said: “Alongside these changes, we will continue to invest in our remaining branch network to offer high quality banking services, fully integrated with improved digital capability.
“We are working to ensure the transition towards digital – which is being seen right across the economy – is handled sensitively and pragmatically for our colleagues and customers.
“We’re taking steps to support vulnerable customers and those in rural locations.”
Dominic Hook, national officer, at workers’ union Unite, said: “Unite has urged the bank to rethink these plans and protect these much-needed jobs during the current health pandemic.
“Not only do these staff deserve more from their employer after showing the utmost loyalty to TSB, customers will be deeply hit by these branch closures.
“Unite has argued for some time that the financial services industry has a social responsibility not to walk away from its local customers, who continue to need access to banking in bank branches.”
with PA Wires