Region’s popular bank closing today
IN A disappointing and unfortunate turn of events another business in the region will be closing - this time it's a well-used bank.
ANZ confirmed it would be closing the last remaining branch in the Somerset region.
The branch at 36 William Street, Kilcoy, is set to close for good at 4pm today (Thursday, February 27).
It will be the fifth bank the Somerset region has lost in four years.
The unsavoury trend was discussed at a recent Somerset Council meeting, with Councillor Sean Choat expressing concerns the region may one day lose all of its bank branches.
"You look at Lowood, you look at Toogoolawah, and you wonder which one's next," he said.
"How long before there's no banks left in the Somerset?"
In June 2016, the ANZ branch in Toogoolawah closed its doors, with ANZ officials giving their assurance the Kilcoy Branch would not fail.
ANZ also withdrew its agency agreement with Australia Post in 2019, a service which allows Australia Post offices to function as miniature bank branches.
It means ANZ customers in the Somerset will no longer be able to conduct any kind of banking except via a handful of ATMs, most of which do not accept deposits.
Kilcoy Chamber of Commerce president Bronwyn Davies said the closure meant the community would be left in the lurch and the economy could be crushed.
"The impact is going to be massive - we're potentially going to lose a lot of business through our stores as people are simply going to go to the Moreton Bay," Ms Davies said.
"Because people won't shop here if they have to go there to get cash or make a deposit."
Ms Davies said a large chunk of the region's businesses relied on cash to operate.
Since ANZ's announcement, the chamber of commerce has received dozens of complaints.
"I've been talking to businesses all morning and we already have two who are thinking they're not going to renew their leases now," she said.
"They will not be able to use cash - they don't have the ability to drive and leave their businesses to go to another area and get cash out for their floats."
However, ANZ's general manager for southern Queensland, Nathalie Hesse, said customers who wanted to do face-to-face banking could do so at the Woodford branch.
"ANZ was unable to reach an agreement with the landlord of our Kilcoy branch for a new lease," she said.