Bruce Crawford MSP and Alyn Smith MP are seeking assurances from banking firm TSB on the long-term future of their Stirling High Street branch, after plans were announced to close more than half of their current branches in Scotland.
The business pointed to shifting consumer habits toward digital services, and the continuing pressures on traditional ‘brick and mortar’ banking services.
TSB currently operates one branch in the City Centre of Stirling on Murray Place. Whilst this outlet did not appear on the recent list of store closures, Mr Smith and Crawford recognise the importance of in-person banking services and seek comfort from TSB management on the future of the branch.
100 mobile advisors are set to be introduced across the bank’s operating areas, to serve rural communities, with plans to work with local stakeholders to increase this provision where necessary.
Bruce Crawford MSP said:
‘Banking is a service that remains vital to businesses and people right across Stirling. Whilst improvements in digital provision are welcome, banks must be cautious they don’t leave behind customers not already immersed in digital systems.
‘Whilst I’m relieved the local TSB branch in Stirling will remain open, my thoughts are with the hundreds of staff members across Scotland who will lose their jobs as a result of these redundancies.’
‘This sorry episode reveals the true extent of the pressures high street retailers face. The UK government must make full use of its borrowing powers to support key businesses through these challenging times.’
Alyn Smith MP said:
‘Traditional banking as we know it is changing, especially in the era of social distancing, changing consumer habits and increased concern over disease. But online services don’t meet everyone’s needs, and there’s a real danger banking restructures and closures freeze out our most vulnerable.
‘However, my prime focus for Stirling is to protect jobs through supporting businesses. Infrastructure such as physical bank branches are key to this.
‘I’m glad that Stirling’s TSB branch will continue to function, but nonetheless I’ll be seeking further assurances from their management team on long-term plans. Changes to important local services must work for customers and our communities right across Stirling’.