Eight jobs to go as bank closes Kirkcaldy branch

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Eight people will close their jobs when Santander closes ins bank branch in Kirkcaldy’s High Street.

The doors will shut on June 13 as part of a UK-wide plan to cull branches and move more services online.

Staff have been told they could be offered jobs at the Dunfermline branch which will be Santander’s sole remaining Fife outlet after it shuts Kirkcaldy and St Andrews this summer.

Santander has come under renewed criticism from politicians over how it has handled the closure plan – and how it will impact on local customers.

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The bank insists it is responding to customer trends, buts fall-back position of directing people to use local post offices has not gone down well.

Lesley Laird, MP for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, said: “While most banks cite the fact that customers can bank at Post Offices, sub/postmasters are reporting across the UK that they are struggling financially to provide banking services due to the fee being offered for transaction processing costs.

“I was told the bank is aware of this issue and is working towards solutions but that will obviously not happen overnight. Meanwhile, it puts strain on the Post Office network.”

She also challenged Santander over how it has gone about the closure plan which will see yet another bank depart the town’s High Street. “It is an irony not lost on me that Santander has decided to close Kirkcaldy’s branch before undertaking a consultation, and have not yet even been in touch with Fife Council,” she said.

“I understand the challenges faced by the banking network, and the need to consider branch closures to stay commercially viable, but the speed and scale of closures must be tempered with the need to maintain security and acceptable customer service.

“I now intend to pick up with the trade unions and will continue to review the impact of the closure, in particular the impact on Post Office branches.”

The St Andrews branch will close on May 2. A total of 140 branches are set to shut, affecting almost 1200 staff.