Spotty Bag Shop owner says RBS closure in Banff “devastating blow”

Banff's Spotty Bag shop owner Des Cheyne
Banff's Spotty Bag shop owner Des Cheyne

A north-east entrepreneur yesterday described the decision to close the Royal Bank of Scotland branch in Banff as a “devastating blow.”

The bank on the High Street will open its doors for the last time next May.

The 18 north and north-east RBS branches set to close – and when

RBS have said transactions at the town centre building have fallen by a third since 2012 and that only 59 customers use it every week.

But Des Cheyne, owner of the Spotty Bag Shop, has said he fears for Banff’s main thoroughfare once the axe has fallen.

He said: “It is a devastating blow to the local economy.

“There was an impact on Low Street when the Clydesdale Bank closed and my biggest worry is the High Street becomes the same.

“It is a huge blow for businesses, but more for Banff in general.”

Another branch will close in Turriff on June 26 next year.

The lender says transactions there have dropped by over a third in the last five years and they now only serve 26 customers a week.

Robert Steven, managing director of Turriff-based department store Celebrations, said: “It has certainly been a hot topic of conversation in the store and speaking to some of our customers you get the feeling that it is very poor for the bank to take this facility away.

“Quite a lot of people don’t use online banking and they rely on the branch and if it is gone they may have to change banks.”