The Woolwich's mortgage administration department is understood to be close to collapse after being flooded with applications for its Open Plan product range.
Industry sources claim the UK's fourth-biggest lender is buckling under the strain of coping with rocketing applications from IFAs since the bank revamped its flexible mortgage range in January.
IFAs claim that the borrower applications they have forwarded to the bank are up to two weeks behind the normal processing time of a few days.
They also claim that Woolwich gave them no indication of impending delays, leaving them to face angry clients.
A source close to the bank claims it was “ill equipped” to cope with the avalanche of applications it attracted from IFAs following the overhaul of the company's mortgage range earlier in the year.
Woolwich admits the abnormally high volumes of business is putting its admin department “under duress” but denies it is on the verge of imploding.
A spokeswoman says: “There are going to be times when we will not be able to meet the timescales we set ourselves. We are working to keep the delays to a minimum, but volumes have just been absolutely immense.”
A mortgage IFA says: “Woolwich has been the victim of its own success but it really should have kept an eye on the levels of business coming in.”