One of Britain’s big name banks is pulling out of York this month.
The Royal Bank of Scotland on Nessgate will close on 15 June. After that, the nearest branches will be in Leeds, Doncaster and Hull.
It is owned by the NatWest Group. A NatWest spokesman told YorkMix: “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 NatWest Group has been majority-owned by the UK taxpayer since it was bailed out for £45.8 billion in 2008 at the height of the financial crisis.
Last month the Treasury sold £1.1 billion of shares, cutting its stake in the bank from 59.8% to 54.8%.
The NatWest spokesman said no staff were at risk of redundancy as a result of the Nessgate branch closure: “We will relocate impacted colleagues to another branch within our network.”
He stressed RBS customers can use the NatWest branch, “which is less than a minute’s walk away”.
Plans have been submitted to remove the two cash machines and fill in the wall to match the existing facade. Marketing and signs will be removed too.
In 2018, we revealed that the RBS building’s owners, the Helmsley Group, had submitted plans to the council, saying it wanted to convert the building to a restaurant.
It was in advance of the bank lease running out the following year.
At the time the Helmsley Group said: “There is no reasonable prospect of the building being required by an A2 tenant (office or bank use) after the current tenant vacates the building in 2019.”
The whole building was once The Coach and Horses pub, widely known in York as The Big Coach, but that closed in the 1960s.