Clydesdale owner Virgin Money takes axe to 12 Scottish bank branches in 'shameful but bizarre' move: full list
Virgin Money has dealt another blow to high street banking after taking the axe to a dozen Scottish branches.
The Glasgow-headquartered lender said the number of customers using bank branches for day-to-day transactions had been on a “downward trajectory” for a number of years, and this has been further accelerated by the pandemic.
It noted that the decision to close a branch was based on a number of factors, including location, usage, proximity to alternative branches and lease arrangements.
Bosses said they had given “careful consideration” of the impact on the local area, as well as the needs of “vulnerable customers” and the accessibility of alternative services such as free-to-use ATMs and the Post Office.
The 12 outlets to shut in Scotland are located in Airdrie, Banchory, Broughty Ferry, Cumbernauld, East Kilbride, Galashiels, Milngavie, Musselburgh, Oban, Portree, Stenhousemuir and Wick.
In addition to these closures in Scotland, a further 18 branches will be closing across the UK. The sites will close in early 2022.
The group said the changes would result in a reduction of around 112 full-time equivalent jobs though it intends to find alternative roles for colleagues “wherever possible”.
Virgin Money was formerly known as CYBG, the owner of the historic Clydesdale and Yorkshire bank names.
Fergus Murphy, group customer experience director at Virgin Money said: “As our customers change the way they want to bank with us and conduct fewer transactions in-store, we must continue to evolve the role of our stores into places where we showcase our products and bring our digital services to life.”
Following the changes, the group will have a network of 131 branches across the UK.
Debbie Hutchings, industrial officer at trade union Unite, said: “The proposed closure of 12 Virgin Money branches across Scotland is not only shameful but bizarre as the group has just about completed the rebranding exercise of the former Clydesdale branches.
“The announcement will disproportionately impact on workers and communities across Scotland, and it is here where the Virgin Group axe will fall the hardest. Island communities from Portree to rural towns such as Wick are going to be left behind by Virgin Money.”