Tesco jobs to go as bank closes

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TESCO is closing its in-store banks, with five members of staff facing the axe in Blackpool.

The retailer has scrapped plans to put bank branches into its stores following the pilot scheme at the Blackpool store in Clifton Retail Park, and others at Bristol, Long Eaton, Oldham and Coventry.

A consultation period has started for the five members of staff employed in the Blackpool branch.

A spokesman for Tesco said: “We are doing everything we can to find them options within Tesco.

“By listening to our customers and trialling concepts with them, we can develop the right products, delivered in the right way.

In addition to internet and telephone banking, in-store banking is a fundamental part of our banking strategy which remains on-track. We have completed pilots in our stores, gaining valuable insight into what our customers want from in-store banking.”

Customers can still use the country’s 550 branches to deposit money and make withdrawals.

The supermarket giant launched its bank scheme with Royal Bank of Scotland in 1997 and hired hundreds of staff in Scotland to support its planned roll-out of products, including a mortgage due out this year.

It ruled out buying more than 300 high street branches in England that were put on the market by Royal Bank of Scotland under orders to sell from the European Commission and analysts have been expecting Tesco to build its bank through its nationwide network of supermarket stores which already attract one in three shoppers.

The firm will now launch a new pilot scheme later this year. The spokesman added: “In-store banking remains an integral part of our banking strategy and we will continue to work on how we deliver this in a way that customers want. The next phase of development will begin later in the year, in stores in Coventry and Dudley, incorporating new technology aligned with new products.”