Carmen is a social issues and rural reporter at the Bay of Plenty Times

Residents upset at ANZ Greerton bank closure

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The ANZ in Greerton is to close. PHOTO/JOHN BORREN.
The ANZ in Greerton is to close. PHOTO/JOHN BORREN.

The Greerton ANZ branch will close next month as more people transition to online banking but the move has upset local residents.

ANZ external communications senior manager Stefan Herrick said the Greerton branch would shut on September 14 because the number of customers visiting had been steadily decreasing.

''The average ANZ customer uses mobile banking one to two times a day, and visits a branch only two times a year.''

A new branch at Tauranga Crossing would open on September 15. There would be 13 retail staff and four business banking specialists, he said.

''Eight staff are moving from the Greerton branch to the new branch and we have relocated four business banking specialists onsite to help service the commercial growth in the area. We are increasing the total number of staff slightly because we are moving from five days a week to seven days a week.''

Data from Priority One shows ANZ bank was also issued a building consent valued at $600,000 on June 7 to build the new branch at Tauranga Crossing at Tauriko.

Greerton Village Community association manager Sally Benning said it had a number of elderly residents and people with mobilty issues ''so they are not really going to be able to get out of Greerton''.

''We would just continue to encourage our community if they want to stay banking in Greerton that is great. There are still three banks in the village so they have the option to do that.''

Greerton resident Pam Holley said she was disappointed with the announcement as ''we have still got little old ladies on trundlers and they love person to person contact''.

''There are a lot of elderly people that get on their scooter they go to the bank they go to places... and it's taking that away from them, they have no idea how to do Internet banking. Some of them can't jump in the car to go to the bank.''

Fellow resident Ernie Haskell, aged 82, said there were a number of senior citizens ''that do not have the confidence to do electronic transactions''.

''The ANZ is going to The Lakes, there lies an example of how the service which has been very good will be sadly missed.''

Bruce Cartwright aged 74 said the move was puzzling and if it was imperative the bank moved, Gate Pa would be the better choice.

''At least there is a flat area down there and people would have more chance of getting there on their scooters than down to Tauriko which is just ridiculous.''

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