The FINANCIAL — Barclays is launching a mobile branch at Colchester Garrison, one of the UK’s largest military bases, removing the practical difficulties servicemen and women can face getting out of the military base and into a branch to undertake their banking activities.
For time-poor military personnel accessing banking services comes with a unique set of challenges. Not only do they often have to travel a significant distance if their base is in a remote area, but it also involves added time if they have to change into civilian clothes to make the trip, which often makes it difficult to squeeze getting to a bank into the busy nature of the military working day, according to Barclays.
As a result, too often many in the Armed Forces are having to use valuable off-duty time at the weekends to complete their banking activities and are not all getting the access they need to take full control of their finances.
To address this issue, Barclays is taking the unique step of bringing banking services direct to Colchester Garrison from December 4th- 8th. Every day from 10-3pm at Colchester Garrison, Barclays staff will be on-site to help customers with their everyday banking. They will also be available to talk to anyone who has questions relating to financial education, planning and goals. This is part of a wider move to encourage military personnel to consider how having a better understanding of financial planning can put them in a stronger position to support themselves and their families, particularly when they are serving away from their home base during extended periods spent on exercise and operations.
The mobile branch launch builds on Barclays’ broader banking support for members of the Armed Forces. Since 2016 Barclays has witnessed a 23 per cent increase in the number of service personnel choosing to bank with them. This is in response to the development of bespoke products and features that specifically support military personnel and their families with financial management requirements in areas such as finding the right mortgage.
Stuart Tootal, Head of the Barclays Armed Forces Transition, Employment & Resettlement (AFTER) Programme, said, “Military service brings with it a unique set of circumstances, so it’s imperative that we create unique solutions to ensure that our armed forces personnel get the right access they need to banking products and services that suit them.’ Taking our mobile bank into the barracks also builds on the work we have already done to help make banking easier for the military community, including our dedicated Armed Forces banking portal which brings all the products and services that can offer value to them into one place.”
Andy White, AFTER Project Manager at Barclays and former 3 Para Sergeant said, “Most people can squeeze a trip to the bank into their day to day lives. But for those serving it’s a real logistical challenge. The mobile branch will reduce the stress of rushing to the bank, allow serving personnel to enjoy their free time, and give them the opportunity to take more control of their money by asking questions with the experts”.