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Lloyds scraps IF and BOS for intermediaries

Lloyds Banking Group has revealed that both Intelligent Finance and Bank of Scotland will cease new lending through intermediaries.

Lloyds has also confirmed that it will be shutting down its Cheltenham & Gloucester high street branches. This will mean the bank will be shedding a further 983 jobs from branches and 168 staff through retail product and support roles.

The group will now be represented by Halifax and Lloyds TSB on English and Welsh high streets and Bank of Scotland on Scottish high streets. From July 1, BOS will begin to offer BOS branded mortgages directly in Scotland. Both IF and BM savings brands will also remain.

The bank says it will be retaining the C&G brand for savings and mortgages, it will also be retaining its BM Solutions mortgage brand for intermediaries, as well as its Scottish Widows brand. The intermediary restructuring will mean 159 staff will be made redundant.

The Gloucester based headquarters for C&G, Halifax’s in West Yorkshire and the Pendeford and also the West Midlands based headquarters for BM will all remain open. 

The group is also making 140 job cuts in its Black Horse personal loan division.

Lloyds Banking Group executive director Helen Weir says: “The strategic focus for C&G from now on will be to further strengthen its intermediary and direct savings businesses.  Another major priority for us is to ensure that we manage the closure of the C&G branch network so that it causes as little disruption as possible to our customers.  We have a number of measures in place to achieve this.

“It is always difficult to make decisions about our business that affect our colleagues. We will work through these changes carefully and sensitively and continue to consult closely with our unions throughout the process.”

Unite joint general secretary Derek Simpson says: “This is truly a dark day for the financial services sector in this country.

“News that Lloyds is to close hundreds of C&G bank branches, resulting in hundreds of job cuts is nothing short of disgraceful.

“This move by Lloyds will rip the heart out of hundreds of local communities up and down the country, as customers will see their valued community bank branch close. Hundreds of staff who have worked hard for years to make the C&G brand a success will view this news as a kick in the teeth. UK taxpayers have not poured billions of pounds into this organisation just to see it sack thousands of hard-working people.”

Unite says as many as 3,000 jobs have been cut by the bank since the merger with HBOS in January. This latest announcement will take the count to nearly 5,000 job loses across the UK.

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