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Yarmouth bank sell off planned

PUBLISHED: 09:44 06 November 2009 | UPDATED: 15:32 03 July 2010

THE streetscape of Great Yarmouth looks set to change after Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Lloyds Banking Group announced a sell-off of branches.

News of the sale, demanded by the European Commission to allay fears over competition after the two were bailed out

by the government, has also prompted speculation that Norwich-based Virgin Money could be looking to acquire some branches.

THE streetscape of Great Yarmouth looks set to change after Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Lloyds Banking Group announced a sell-off of branches.

News of the sale, demanded by the European Commission to allay fears over competition after the two were bailed out

by the government, has also prompted speculation that Norwich-based Virgin Money could be looking to acquire some branches.

The RBS outlets in Hall Quay is among all 318 of its English branches being sold off.

Lloyds, meanwhile, is selling off about 250 Lloyds TSB branches.

The locations have not yet been identified, but it is possible they could include some of its

six branches in Norwich and suburbs, two in Great Yarmouth and one in Gorleston.

RBS is also selling its insurance business, which includes brands such as Churchill, Direct Line, Privilege and Green Flag, while Lloyds

is disposing of online bank Intelligent Finance.

Andrew Hagger of financial data provider Moneynet.co.uk said Virgin Money could well be interested in acquiring the Lloyds and RBS branches.

“They will look at the Lloyds and RBS offerings and not just focus on Northern Rock. They will want the best branch coverage for the best price.”

Scott Mowbray, of Virgin Money, said: “We lodged our application for a banking licence with the FSA in early October. That's expected to take three to six months, so nothing is really going to happen until the New Year.”

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