High street bank Santander has announced that branches in Cheadle and Bramhall are among 111 sites marked for closure.
The Cheadle branch will close at 4pm on 8th July 2021, followed by the Bramhall branch at 4pm on 5th August. The two closures are part of a scaling back of Santander’s face-to-face offering, in line with the growth of online banking. Branches in Stockport’s Merseyway, Didsbury Village (both open Mon-Sat) and Wilmslow (Mon-Fri) will remain open; in Tameside, the Hyde branch will also close. Business and personal banking customers will also be able to withdraw and pay into their Santander accounts at local post offices in Cheadle and Bramhall.
In announcing the raft of branch closures nationwide, Santander said in a statement on their website:
Our customers are continuing to change the way they manage their money, visiting our branches much less and enjoying the convenience of doing their day-to-day banking using Online, Mobile or Telephone Banking. This change has been happening over a number of years now and has accelerated in recent times.
Because of these changes, we’ve carefully and thoroughly reviewed the way we deliver our services and considered many factors, including where each of our branches are located and how they’re used.
We know our branch network remains important to our customers and whilst we’ve made the difficult decision to close some branches, we’ve only done so where we know there are other facilities our customers can use, and where we have another branch within a few miles.
We’ve assessed each branch individually to consider the potential impact for our customers, colleagues and the alternative options available to bank locally.
We’re committed to fair banking through the Access to Banking Standard, which is overseen by the Lending Standards Board and aims to help minimise the impact of branch closures on customers and local communities.
In more detailed information published by Santander to provide its justification for the closures, the bank released information about customer usage of the Cheadle and Bramhall branches, as well as its online services. The bank identified that during the six months from July to December 2019, only 65 customers exclusively used branch services in Cheadle more than six times, and no online or telephone banking, with that figure falling to just 29 customers of its Bramhall branch. Online, mobile and telephone banking services were used by nine out of ten customers of the two branches during the same period.
In light of the announced closures, Santander will be contacting affected business and personal banking customers directly to ensure they are aware of all the ways they can continue to access services in the future, including through Cheadle and Bramhall post offices, and digitally.