NatWest to close its Ramsey branch

Customers will be able to use free banking services at the town's Post Office instead.

Customers will be able to use free banking services at the town's Post Office instead. - Credit: Sarah Allison

A “prominent” town building could be left to stand empty when NatWest closes its branch in Ramsey.

The bank has announced that it will leave the High Street on February 24, blaming the falling demand for over-the-counter services. It said it has seen transactions at the branch drop by 21 per cent in the last few years.

Natwest customers are being advised they can use free banking services at the Post Office in Whytefield Road.

Ramsey mayor, Councillor Ian Curtis, said that he was “not aware” of anyone who would be interested in the building.

“It has got access problems – it is very difficult for anyone who is disabled – and I would imagine the maintenance on it would be quite high,” he said.

A spokesman for NatWest said: “Over our whole branch network there has been a 30 per cent drop in branch transactions since 2010 as people do their banking where and when it is convenient for them, whilst online and mobile transactions have grown by over 200 per cent.

“We expect these trends to continue as more and more of our customers bank with us through our mobile app, by online and telephone and through our upgraded ATM network.

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“When we close a branch, we take a number of factors into account including usage and alternative ways to bank with us in the local area.

“Two people work in the branch but we always aim to redeploy staff to nearby branches where possible and keep compulsory redundancies to a minimum.”

Cllr Curtis added: “I am sad to see it go because it is obviously a prominent building in Ramsey.

“Most people now do their banking online or just use a cash machine. It will obviously affect some of the businesses that go in there and fetch their cash and change for the weekend.

“I think having to go to the Post Office will probably turn off a lot of customers. If somebody wants to discuss their bank account and has to go into Huntingdon, then it could cause quite a few problems, especially for elderly people.”

The other banks and building societies in the town are TSB, Barclays, and Nationwide. NatWest has branches in Huntingdon, St Ives, and Whittlesey.

INFORMATION: To find out more, speak to staff in branch.