Newcastle Building Society to axe jobs and branches

| May 19, 2010
”Newcastle

It has been announced today that Newcastle Building Society is to close four branches and axe 126 jobs.

The Newcastle, which is the UK’s eighth largest building society, said the affected branches are: West Road in Newcastle, Crook in County Durham, Yarm in Stockton-on-Tees and York, and the cuts will bring its branch total down to 31 from 35.

The reduction in headcount is due to a “challenging climate” in the finance sector, according to the society and the job losses will be back office and management roles.

However, it is hoped that cuts will be kept to a minimum by offering voluntary redundancy or other work within the organisation.

In the meantime, the pension scheme for active members will also close.

However, on a positive note, the organisation is creating approximately 80 customer service vacancies in another division, following a contract win.

Commenting on the cutbacks, Jim Willens, chief executive for Newcastle Building Society, said: “To remain strong we need to be realistic in the knowledge that this is still a very challenging climate for the financial services sector.

“We have to make some difficult decisions but these will benefit the society and the majority of its staff in the long-term.

“We believe that by operating with a slightly smaller number of branches and reduced levels of staff in certain areas of our business it will allow us to streamline costs and become more efficient.”

The job losses come just 17 months after the building society announced 150 redundancies.

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