Clydesdale Bank axes Kirkcaldy & Cupar branches

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The Kirkcaldy branch of the Clydesdale Bank will close before the end of the year, it has been announced. Cupar and Kinross will also be axed.

The doors to the High Street business - based at the foot of Kirk Wynd - will shut as part of a shake-up which will see 28 branches gone.

The bank describes them as ‘‘unsustainable” but pledged that frontline jobs would be protected, while any displaced branch managers would be given support.

The move is a blow to the town centre, but one which it can do little to influence as national decisions impact again locally.

The closure is part of a major overhaul which will see £45m sunk into customer improvements including new posts at its busiest branches and six new flagship outlets opened in major cities - but nothing will be left in Kirkcaldy or Cupar, two of its traditional town outlets.

They are on the hit list for closure by the end of 2014 along with branches in towns such as Auchterarder, Blairgowrie, Bothwell, Bridge of Allan, Haddington, and Whitburn.

David Thorburn, chief executive of Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank, said: ‘We are we are making a significant investment to meet the changing needs of customers now and in the future.

“But to deliver what are fundamentally necessary changes, we have to face difficult decisions. No branch closure is welcomed by customers or staff, I understand that, which is why we are working to minimise the effects these changes have on them.

“Our resources must now be focused on where they can deliver the best results for customers, moving with them as their demands change.”

He added: “A branch network remains at the core of what we do, and we are investing in it, but we must balance that against the investment we need to make in the services customers now expect and are using more - online and mobile banking services that give customers control of their finances when and where they want it most.”

>> More in this week’s Fife Free Press and Fife Herald.

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