Sunday, 18 April 2021

Nationwide agrees to rethink branch closure

THE closure of the Nationwide branch in Caversham may not happen following protests by residents.

The company announced last month that the Church Street branch would shut on April 22 due to low demand which made it unviable.

Since then more than 700 people have signed a petition opposing closure as the branch is the only bank or building society in Caversham.

Reading East MP Matt Rodda, who supports the residents, said that following a meeting, Nationwide had agreed to review its decision.

He said: “They say there is not enough use being made of the branch but local people would contest that — at many times there is a queue outside.

“I strongly believe this is a big deal for lots of people. In particular, if you are elderly, it is the only place you can go to cash a cheque.

“A lot of older people feel much more comfortable with a physical building and prefer it to online banking.

“I’ve had more than 900 people fill in a survey and they say overwhelmingly that they want to keep it and that it is valuable.”

Nationwide considered closing the branch in 2013 but decided against after seeing more investment in the area.

To sign the petition, visit bit.ly/3sDkZu6

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