Bank says it will shut high street branch

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BANKING giant HSBC has announced that it will be closing another of its high street branches.

Yesterday it announced the closure of its branch in Cosham High Street, which it says ‘reflects a change in the way customers are banking, HSBC’s continued investment in digital banking, and its objective to achieve a sustainable branch network for the long-term.’

Francesca McDonagh, head of retail banking and wealth management in the UK, said: ‘The way our customers bank with us is changing.

‘More customers are using mobile and internet banking than ever before, innovation such as Touch and Voice ID has proved extremely popular, and fewer people are using branches.

‘More than 90 per cent of our interactions with customers are now through our digital channels – an increase from 80 per cent last year.’

The decision to close the branch is part of a wider HSBC announcement to close 62 branches by the end of 2017.

At the end of last year it announced that it would be closing its branch in West Street, Havant on March 3.

Portsmouth North MP Penny Mordaunt said that removing banking services from the high street was ‘not a good thing’.

She said she was hopeful after an agreement between the Post Office and UK banks was also struck yesterday that will see the biggest expansion in face-to-face banking in a generation.

She said: ‘By providing easy access to day-to-day banking services at the Post Office, the impact of bank branch closures can be minimised.

‘I am looking into exactly how this will work in Portsmouth, but it is certainly one way we can ensure people can perform these basic transactions in our local high streets, which are vital for personal banking and for business.’

The Cosham branch will close on Friday, June 2.

Research from consumer group Which? found that more than 1,000 branches of high street banks have closed in the past two years across the country.