The bank Echuca needs isn’t the one it can keep

By Lachlan Durling

ONLINE and telephone banking has been blamed for the slow decline of Echuca’s Bank Australia branch, which will close on April 3.

The Hare St branch has been named as one of the locations on the bank’s regional hit list for new year closures, which Bank Australia deputy chief executive John Yardley put down to the changing nature of banking.

The local branch is one of four Victorian branches which are set for closure however Mr Yardley said local customers will still be able to bank online or by phone.

“We have made the difficult decision to close the Echuca branch after a thorough review of our operations across our national branch network over the past six months,” he said.

“We have had a long history serving the community of Echuca and we’re committed to ensuring that our local customers are able to continue to access banking services – whether this is through our digital and phone channels, which many are already using, or with another local bank if the customer needs a face-to-face service.

“We will be working with individual customers to find a solution to meet their particular needs.

“Our priority is ensuring our team members affected by this decision are supported to find other roles within Bank Australia, or with other employers in the region.

“We recognise the timing of this announcement so close to Christmas period is not ideal, and will be unwelcome news for the affected staff and customers.

“However, we wanted to let everyone know about this decision soon after it was made.

“Ultimately, this closure reflects the changing nature of banking as more and more customers choose to do their banking online.”

An information session will be held in early 2020 for customers to meet with senior representatives of the bank to talk about the branch closure and their banking needs.