WOODEND'S Commonwealth Bank is set to close, leaving customers in the town branchless and forced to drive to neighbouring towns to access a physical location.
The Commonwealth Bank in Woodend was the only bank in town. Its closure will force its customers to commute to Kyneton (13 minutes) or Gisborne (15 minutes) to access a Commonwealth branch.
"We must act to stop the banks walking away from communities in our suburbs and towns," Finance Sector Union (FSU) National Secretary Julia Angrisano said.
"It's time to examine the impact of these closures which have hit hundreds of communities across the country.
"Communities depend on the banks to deliver financial services but if we don't stop the current trend, there will be no branches left."
According to the FSU, the 'Big Four' banks - Commonwealth, NAB, ANZ, and Westpac - have closed 550 branches across the country since January 2020.
Ms Angrisano said the Westpac Group planned to close a further 24 branches, Commonwealth would close five, and NAB is set to close eight banks.
She said the the closures would result in the loss of 182 jobs.
The FSU has campaigned against branch closures for several years and is now seeking government intervention to protect local economies and save what's left of Australia's bank branch network.
"Instead the banks continue to shut down branches, sack workers and turn their backs on customers and businesses," Ms Angrisano said.
"Cost savings from branch closures are designed to increase the banks' already huge profits.
"We need an inquiry into bank branch closures to assess the impact on local communities when the banks pull out of suburbs and towns."
If you're reading this it's because you're a loyal subscriber to the Bendigo Advertiser. If you want to get more out of your subscription join the discussion on the Bendigo Advertiser's subscriber group on Facebook today.
Sign up for our newsletter to stay up to date.