FIVE Dorset branches of HSBC are to close, it has been announced.
The bank has revealed plans to shut 114 branches across the country as part of a business-wide review, citing customers’ continued migration to digital services for the move.
HSBC said it would be investing tens of millions of pounds in updating and improving its remaining branch network, while also providing free tablet devices and one-to-one coaching for selected customers as part of its post-closure strategy.
The firm will also be investing ‘millions of pounds’ in support for Shared Banking Hubs and Community Access to Cash initiatives.
Announcing the closures, HSBC said since 2017, use of the bank’s branch network by regular customers fell by 65%, while footfall in the vast majority (74%) of closing branches has reduced by at least 50%.
Some of the branches closing are now serving fewer than 250 customers a week, the firm said.
In Dorset, the branches which will be closing and when, are:
Blandford Forum (April 18, 2023)
Shaftesbury (April 25, 2023)
Bridport (May 23, 2023)
Christchurch (July 25, 2023)
Dorchester (August 22, 2023)
Jackie Uhi, HSBC UK’s managing director of UK distribution, said: “People are changing the way they bank and footfall in many branches is at an all-time low, with no signs of it returning. Banking remotely is becoming the norm for the vast majority of us.
“Not only can we do it anywhere at any time of day or night, many more things can be done at the customers’ convenience and don’t rely on a branch visit.
“Branches will continue to play an important role in day-to-day banking, while providing specialist face-to-face support in moments that matter.
“In addition to our branch network, customers can access services through the Post Office network, our Community Pop-ups and soon-to-come Banking Hubs, alongside Live Chat, social media and through telephone banking.”
She added: “When a branch is closing it is important that we support customers in that area, whether they are regular or infrequent branch users.
“One way we have supported selected customers is to help them transition to digital banking by providing them with a free tablet device and training them up. The new tablet now enables them to securely keep control of their finances remotely.”