Wanstead’s NatWest to close

NatWest Bank has announced its Wanstead branch is to close, along with 35 others around the country. It means that for the first time in living memory, Wanstead will not have any banks or building societies. Fifteen years ago there were five.

In a statement the bank said: “As with many industries, most of our customers are shifting to mobile and online banking, because it’s faster and easier for people to manage their financial lives.

“We understand and recognise that digital solutions aren’t right for everyone or every situation, and that when we close branches we have to make sure that no one is left behind.

“We take our responsibility seriously to support the people who face challenges in moving online, so we are investing to provide them with support and alternatives that work for them.”

The branch will close in October.

15 thoughts on “Wanstead’s NatWest to close”

  1. It’s always v busy when I go in – what is the reasoning? They helpfully (??) point out that the nearest branch as the crow flies is Walthamstow. Which takes ages to get to by public transport, and there is little parking in Walthamstow. Very frustrating.

  2. Closing the NatWest Bank discriminates against people who do have not access to the internet or those who find it difficult to use. Also what will happen to the staff who have shown excellent service to the people of Wanstead for may years are they now to be thrown on the scrapheap !

    This is yet another example of big business making money with no thought for its customers – Thames Water mark 2

    I think that the Leader of Redbridge Council should demand a meeting with NatWest to ask what they expect the people of Wanstead to do for the banking after October !

  3. It’s a nice building that’s a bit under used. It should free up space for another business. We’re all banking online now.

    1. No we’re not all banking online Hector!
      Although I can do a lot of business online I found recently that some issues require a face to face visit with the a bank.
      I can only assume you’ve never had to deal with the money matters of a deceased person which requires documentation to be handed over in person!
      It’s a disgrace that a community such as ours is left without a bank or building society.

  4. Although many people are now using online banking, by no means everyone is and not all have access to it. Closing bank branches has a particularly devastating impact on a large number of adults who almost entirely rely on cash in their day-to-day lives. And will this closure also mean the loss of yet another ATM on our high street?

    The consumer group Which? has been monitoring bank closures since 2015: https://www.which.co.uk/money/banking/switching-your-bank/bank-branch-closures-is-your-local-bank-closing-ayYyu4i9RdHy

  5. This is a real shame. I understand that many people bank online these days but the footfall in this particular branch is always pretty high. There clearly is a demand here so why? Would it be possible for the readers of Wansteadium to enlist some objection to these measures?

  6. This bank has always been more than just a place to deal with money. It has always supported elderly and disabled people in handling their finances. Closing face to face banking is wrong.

  7. No Hector we are not all banking on line. Many older folk and people without internet access depend on a local branch of a bank or building society. This move is discriminatory. The bank nearly always has a queue so there is no question of it being under used.

  8. Natwest profit last year…

    “The strength and resilience of our business is evident in the results we have announced today. Our operating profit for 2022 of £5.1bn increased from £3.8bn the year before. Income was up around 30%*, costs were down nearly 3% for the Go-forward group** and we retain a strong capital position. In a difficult macro-economic environment, our strong customer franchise, disciplined risk management and robust balance sheet mean we are well positioned to support our customers”

    5100 Million in profit. But yet they cant support vulnerable, elderly and poor customers (or staff) in 35 branches they are closing despite the rhetoric above. Better to save 10.5 million in branch costs instead. e.g. Make an extra 0.2% in profit.


  9. Sadly while I used to go to that branch many times a week I don’t anymore and neither do most people
    The world has moved on, rather than fighting for outdated business it should become something new. Not sure Wanstead needs any more Coffee shops but the market will decide. Cash use has dropped and bank branches are outdated ,

  10. This closure is prejudicial to those who have most needs but as they are not the richest in society they will not count with the banks. This is a sad reflection of the world as it is increasingly becoming..

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