Moves have been made to lessen the impact of bank closures in the Borders with the introduction of a mobile branch.
The Royal Bank of Scotland will be launching its mobile branch - named Morag - next month.
This follows the closure of RBS branches in Greenlaw, Chirnside and Newtown St Boswells.
The bank is reacting to findings that footfall in these branches fell by as much as 30 per cent in the last few years.
Even though opening hours were cut, usage continued to fall.
Local CEO Hazel Anderson said that the public response to the mobile branches has been broadly positive.
“People have reacted really well,” she said, “and they seem to be pleased that we’re moving deeper into the community, going to places like Allanton and Paxton, not just places where branches have closed.”
She stressed that the design of the mobile bank means it is not just a cash machine on wheels.
“Morag is the first all-singing all-dancing branch that the bank has put out on the road, and for the Borders to get it is fantastic.
“We’re going to be coming to the locations where branches are closing twice a week.”
Bill Dunleavey, branch manager at Haddington, said that the idea is the natural development of RBS’s policy of providing ‘points of presence’, where bank staff are brought face to face with customers.
The mobile branch is equipped to provide every services that a normal branch offers, from withdrawals and deposits to opening accounts and internet banking.
The service makes its debut on June 19, the day after the branches in Chirnside and Greenlaw close.
The mobile bank’s timetable in eastern Borders is as follows.
Tuesdays: Greenlaw 10.00 – 11.00; Coldstream 11.20 – 11.40; Paxton 11.50 – 12.10; Allanton 12.30 – 12.50; Foulden 1.10 -1.30; Chirnside 2.30- 3.30.
Thursdays: Chirnside 9.45 – 10.45; Swinton 11.00 – 11.20; Leitholm 11.40 – 12.00; Greenlaw 1.10 – 2.10; Newtown St Boswells 2.30 – 3.30.
On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays the unit will travel through East Lothian, including stops at Pathhead, Lauder, Stow and East Linton.