Nationwide opens branches early for elderly and vulnerable during coronavirus outbreak

16 March 2020

  • Our branches open hour early for older people and those with underlying conditions

  • We're testing new operating hours in more than 100 branches across UK

  • Branches will open to wider membership from usual opening times

  • We encourage you to sign up to online and mobile banking as more stay home

Nationwide Building Society is trialling new branch opening times during the coronavirus outbreak so that elderly and vulnerable people can manage their money in a safe environment with a dedicated hour each morning.

From Wednesday, March 18, more than 100 branches1 across the UK will open from 8am, instead of the usual 9am, in a trial to determine whether it is an effective way of providing support to people aged 70 and above and those with underlying health conditions at an uncertain time.

The arrangement will enable groups of people at highest risk from coronavirus to go about their day-to-day transactions with greater confidence and safety during the pandemic.

They will be able to use the facilities first, benefiting from enhanced cleaning that branches will undergo each evening, and before they open to the wider membership from their usual opening times.

If successful and if there is a need, Nationwide will consider whether the trial could be extended to more branches across the Society’s 650-network.

Nationwide is also advising members that don’t currently use either the Internet Bank or Mobile App to register, with in-branch tutorials led by employees as well as demonstration videos and help offered via the Society’s contact centres.

Mandy Beech, Nationwide’s Branch Network Director, said: “Lots of good work is being done across and within communities throughout the length and breadth of the UK and we want to do as much as we can.

“We understand the current situation is likely to hit the elderly and vulnerable the hardest, not only because of the higher risk of catching coronavirus, but also through potentially feeling isolated from the wider world should this issue continue for a longer period.

“That is why we are trialling a specific opening time for our older and most vulnerable members. We know that, in many instances, these are the people who most value and benefit from face-to-face service when they manage their money. In some cases, it may also be one of the only interactions they have each day.

“We also know that many older people rely on public transport. As such we would ask local authorities and Government to consider whether they could temporarily enable use of free bus passes for older people before 9.30am, in addition to relaxing parking rules in local high streets at the start of the day.”

The move follows on from a range of support options outlined by Nationwide last week for members financially impacted by coronavirus. These will be offered on a case-by-case basis and range from payment holidays on mortgages and increased credit and overdraft limits, to the removal of interest charges on credit cards and overdrafts.

1Full list of branches:

Aberdeen, Aylesbury, Ayr, Ballymena, Basingstoke, Bath, Bedford, Belfast, Bexleyheath, Birmingham, Boston, Brighton (West Street), Bristol Cabot Circus, Brixton, Bromley, Cambridge, Camden Town, Canterbury, Cardiff, Carlisle, Chelmsford, Chester, Chichester, Colchester, Coventry, Crawley, Croydon, Cwmbran, Derby, Dumfries, Dunfermline, Ealing, East Kilbride, Eastbourne, Enfield, Exeter, Fareham, Galashiels, Glasgow, Guildford, Hastings, Hereford, High Wycombe, Hull, Ilford, Inverness, Ipswich, Kings Lynn, Kingston-Upon-Thames, Lancaster, Leeds, Leicester, Lincoln, London City, Luton, Macclesfield, Maidenhead, Maidstone, Manchester, Milton Keynes, Newcastle Upon Tyne, Newport (IoW), Northampton (Weston Favell), Norwich (St Stephen's Street), Nottingham, Oxford, Peterborough, Plymouth, Poole, Portadown, Portsmouth, Preston, Reading (Broad Street), Romford, Salisbury, Sheffield, Shrewsbury, Slough (High Street), Solihull, Southampton, Stafford, Stevenage, Stockport, Stockton on Tees, Sutton Coldfield, Swansea, Swindon (Regent Street), Tamworth, Taunton, Truro, Tunbridge Wells, Uxbridge, Walthamstow, Warrington, Watford, Wellingborough, Wimbledon, Winchester, Wolverhampton, Wood Green, Worcester, Worthing, Wrexham, York. Details of our individual branch opening hours are available online.

About Nationwide

Nationwide is the world's largest building society as well as one of the largest savings providers and a top-three provider of mortgages in the UK. It is also a major provider of current accounts, credit cards, ISAs and personal loans. Nationwide has around 15 million customers.

Customers can manage their finances in a branch, via the mobile app, on the telephone, internet and post. The Society has around 18,000 employees. Nationwide's head office is in Swindon with administration centres based in Northampton, Bournemouth and Dunfermline. The Society also has a number of call centres across the UK.

Please note: If you are a customer looking for information on our products and services, please visit the main website.