Westpac-ing up

Condobolin's Westpac in-store branch will close its doors for the final time today (Wednesday, 8 July).

• Westpac staff Sharon Phillips and Tracy Wood together with long time Westpac customer Henry (Harry) Martin inside the bank’s local in-store branch that will close its doors for the final time on Wednesday, 8 July. MB

By Melissa Blewitt

Condobolin’s Westpac in-store branch will close its doors for the final time today (Wednesday, 8 July).

The decision, which was made by Westpac in late April, will see a transfer of its services to Australia Post.

The bank recorded a $7.568 billion profit in the 12 months to 30 September 2014, but it was still unable to make 147 in-store branches viable.

Many local, loyal and long-time customers have been left fuming by the decision.

“I have been a customer for 30 years, and now I will have to travel to Forbes to have any face-to-face contact with the [Westpac] bank – it’s ridiculous,” Narelle Townsend said.

Henry (Harry) Martin also is upset by the closure.

“I need a gofer to get around, and accessing the Post Office will be difficult for me,” he said.

‘There has been no consideration of older customers and how they will be able to access bank services.”

Business owner Peter Kuhn of Condobolin Swiss Watch Centre is so outraged with the decision, he is changing banks.

“We are moving [to another bank],” he said.

“I am not impressed with how Westpac handled this situation at all.

“I got a generic email informing me of the decision and have had no further contact.

“We will no longer be banking at Westpac.”

David Cooney, who owns the store from which the in-store branch operates from said the decision was “city-centric.”

“No-one this side of the Blue Mountains made a decision like that – it is very disappointing that customers lose out yet again.”

Committed to Condo

A group of local business owners want to establish a Chamber of Commerce in Condobolin.

• Tracie Robertson, Daryl Nairn, Brenda Haworth and Peter Kuhn want all Condobolin businesses to come together and form a Chamber of Commerce. They believe it would empower both business owners and the community. A meeting is being held on Thursday, 2 July at the Condobolin RSL Club (upstairs) from 5:30pm. All local business owners are invited to attend. MB

By Melissa Blewitt

A group of local business owners want to establish a Chamber of Commerce in Condobolin.

There was strong interest expressed at an informal meeting held last week.

“A Chamber of Commerce acts as a conjuit between businesses and Council,” Tracie Robertson of Ray White said.

“Parkes and Forbes have had great success with theirs, and I believe it is imperative we all work together to have a collective voice in the community.”

Peter Kuhn of Condobolin Swiss Watch Centre agrees.

“We all want Condobolin to thrive,” he said.

“We want a spirited discussion on what we can do to make the retail sector in Condobolin flourish.”

Shirley Bell of Happy Daze said it is imperative to get people from other towns to visit and shop in Condobolin.

“Shopping local helps everyone,” she said.

“We want business owners to come to the formation meeting and share their ideas.

“Put your thoughts forward and be part of making the Condobolin Chamber of Commerce a success.”

It is hoped by forming a Condobolin Chamber of Commerce, it will enable local businesses to network with each other and share vital local retail information.

“Together we can achieve more,” Peter, Shirley and Tracie said.

The formation meeting for the Condobolin Chamber of Commerce will be held on Thursday, 2 July from 5:30pm at the Condobolin RSL Club.

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