On Monday 15th June there was a meeting at the NatWest Eastham Branch regarding the impending closure on the 9th Sept.
In attendance were:
Robert Taylor – Area CEO NatWest
Nicky O’Regan – Manager NatWest
Dave Mitchell – Libdem Councillor Eastham Wirral South
Phil Gilchrist – Libdem Councillor Eastham Wirral South
Chris Carubia – Libdem Councillor Eastham Wirral South
Mr Taylor informed us that the decision had not been taken lightly by NatWest and also stated that it was not due to cost cutting, but being closed because of the fall in monthly transactions.
He told us that this branch has only 67 regular customers, 44 of which are individuals and 23 businesses, out of a total of 4500 customer accounts, a fact that is difficult to understand as the branch always seems to be busy.
I would like to know what constitutes a ‘regular customer’ as I have been banking there for over 25 years and am not included in these figures. Customer loyalty is obviously not a factor.
With regards to their customer charter (No 9) as detailed earlier, we were informed that they stopped adopting it in 2013 so it does not apply.
We discussed the issue of the bank machine, and although they would like it to be so, there is no guarantee that whoever takes over the building will wish for it to remain. You will be able to register at the post office to use the services there, but as we pointed out, he Post Office is still not secured and could be lost, leaving no facility at all in our community and those nearby such as Little Sutton and Willaston.
NatWest understand that they will lose a few customers but their opinion is that most will carry on online or travel to another branch as people are creatures of habit and don’t like to change their insurance, GP surgeries or Banks.
Despite our efforts and objections it transpires that the decision has already been made and cannot be overturned.
The only good news to come from this meeting is the assurance that the staff will be employed elsewhere. I know that Martin, Kate and the others are highly thought of in Eastham.