Bank branches to close at Somerset, Westbury

The Commonwealth Bank will close its Somerset and Westbury branches, citing declining customer demand.

Not impressed: Peter Holm.

Not impressed: Peter Holm.

“I think it’s just crazy,” Somerset vet and Burnie Chamber of Commerce and Industry president Peter Holm said.

“The insensitivity of it is just enormous.

“ ...there’s always people in there, there’s a lot of cranky people around Somerset today.”

He said the branch was the only bank branch in town.

A Commonwealth Bank spokesperson said the decision to close the two branches on November 24 followed a review.

“The decision to close these branches was not an easy one and we understand some members of the community may be disappointed,” the spokesperson said.

“Commonwealth Bank still has by far the largest footprint in Tasmania, with more than 35 branches across the state.

“We have identified that fewer customers use these branches following a steady decline in transactions as they choose to use other banking channels like online and mobile.

“Over the last five years, we’ve seen a 40 per cent decline in the number of transactions at our Somerset branch.

“In fact, 39 per cent per cent of customers who have transacted in Somerset over the last quarter have also transacted in Burnie.”

The spokesperson said the bank’s regular reviews of its “branch footprint” led to new branches, installation of new technology, refurbishment and relocations, as well as some closures.

“Over the last financial year, we’ve invested $65 million on refurbishing our branches and we continue our commitment to the branch network,” they said.

This story Bank branch closures in NW, North first appeared on The Advocate.