Tag Archives: Saturday’s

HSBC UK confirms new branch opening hours – including opening 179 branches on Saturdays

HSBC UK confirms new branch opening hours - including opening 179 branches on Saturdays
The Government has said it hopes to be able to lift social distancing restrictions “not before” June 21, with this being step four out of four in the Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s roadmap out of lockdown. Today, HSBC UK has confirmed it is planning to extend the hours its branches open, as coronavirus restrictions ease further next month.
Under the plans, post June 21, HSBC UK will be increasing midweek opening hours, which are currently 10am to 2pm or 10am to 4pm.

Additionally, the bank has confirmed intentions to open 179 branches on Saturdays, and one on a Sunday.

The additional opening times will mean, across the bank’s branch network, customers will have nearly 5,000 extra hours to do their banking in a branch.

Changes were made to branch opening hours in March 2020, as the COVID-19 pandemic hit.

HSBC UK said there was a focus on providing greater coverage across more communities with a reduced resource.

This was to take into account colleagues who were shielding, unable to attend work due to family or childcare needs, plus the need to temporarily transfer staff to help other areas of the bank experiencing unprecedented demand.

HSBC said these adjusted hours are a step towards a permanent set of opening hours.

Jackie Uhi, HSBC UK’s Head of Branch Network, commented: “It has been an extremely complex picture for those public-facing businesses who have been open during the pandemic, and the organisation and logistics involved in staffing a large retailer at these difficult times shouldn’t be under-stated.

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“Thanks to the hard work of our branch colleagues and a sensible plan on opening hours, we have consistently been able to keep over 98 percent of our branches open during the pandemic, while operating in line with the Governments guidance and keeping our customers and colleagues safe.

“We appreciate the patience, understanding and flexibility of our customers who have used our branches, as well as made use of other ways to bank, including using online banking or our banking app.

“With the recent re-opening of non-essential retail businesses and the possibility of remaining restrictions easing providing us all with a more normal way of life, we are planning to extend our branch opening hours.

“We will continue to keep these opening hours under review and look very closely at how customer behaviour is evolving as we come out of lockdown to understand customer demand in local markets.”

Ms Uhi continued: “As customer behaviour is evolving, we continue to evolve as well.

“We will shortly be introducing Pop-Up Branches to local communities, and for those customers who need further digital support beyond a branch, [email protected] – live virtual webinars by specially trained branch colleagues – has been developed to assist customers from the comfort of their own sofa.”

From June 21, the branches in the list below will operate between 09:30 – 13.00 on Saturdays.

The Gerrard Street branch will not be open Saturday, but be open on Sunday instead and from 11.30 – 15:00.

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This post originally appeared on Daily Express :: Finance Feed

Lionel Messi set to tie all-time El Clasico appearance record – but will Saturday’s LaLiga clash against Real Madrid be his last?

Lionel Messi set to tie all-time El Clasico appearance record – but will Saturday’s LaLiga clash against Real Madrid be his last?

Lionel Messi is set to make his 45th ‘El Clasico’ appearance when resurgent LaLiga superpowers Barcelona meet arch-rivals Real Madrid clash on Saturday evening. But should football fans be prepared for this to be his swansong?

For a while, it seemed as if this season’s LaLiga title race was all over bar the shouting. Diego Simeone’s Atletico Madrid had built an impressive lead at the summit of the table which had threatened to arrest Barcelona and Real Madrid’s stranglehold on the league in recent seasons, particularly as both powerhouses struggled for momentum for a variety of reasons. 

In Barcelona’s case, the decline seemed the most apparent. Long gone appeared the days of their tiki-taka excellence which led to them being the most the successful European side of the last decade or more, replaced instead by a changing-of-the-guard Champions League whitewashing last summer courtesy of Bayern Munich.

Rancor was felt both in the boardroom and on the pitch. Barcelona’s greatest ever player, Argentina magician Messi, began to cast glances elsewhere for the first time in his career and pushed for a move to the likes of the cash-rich Paris Saint-Germain and Manchester City in a feud which threatened to escape the Camp Nou and finds its conclusion in a courtroom.
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New boss Ronald Koeman also struggled early to imprint his philosophies early in what threatened to be a further decay of the great club’s legacy.

But as Barcelona and Messi threatened to degenerate into an Ozymandias-like ruined effigy of what they once were, things began to change.

Atletico’s lead has been eroded from 12 points in December to a single point today, meaning that Saturday’s ‘El Clasico’ winner could usurp Simeone’s side in the standings – although Real Madrid would require a margin of victory of more than four goals to do so.

What has changed? Well, in Barcelona’s case at least, one needs only to look to Messi. After failing to impress for much of 2020, his form this year has rivals anyone in Europe’s top five leagues.

His last 13 games in Barca colors have resulted in 16 goals and seven assists as part of a run crucial to his team’s late title push, as well as their advancement to next Sunday’s Copa del Rey final.

Messi will tie the record set by Madrid skipper Sergio Ramos, who won’t play on Saturday, for the most El Clasico appearances (45) in a game which was earmarked earlier in the campaign, during his wantaway spell, as his potential final appearance for Barcelona in Spanish football’s most heated rivalry.

However, the re-election of Joan Laporta to the Barcelona presidency – the man who guided the club through their most successful era under Pep Guardiola – has coincided with the sharp upturn in form, and suggested that Messi will be convinced to stay in what would be the delivery of one of Laporta’s central campaign promises.

Real Madrid, too, enter the game in a rich vein of form. They are unbeaten since January as coach Zinedine Zidane continues to wring impressive performances out of the club’s galaxy of veteran stars such as Karim Benzema, Luka Modric and Toni Kroos. Ramos’s absence could well be felt, though, in such a pivotal fixture.

The timing of both clubs’ comebacks couldn’t have come at a better time for either. In Messi’s case, it is thought that his future at the club is directly linked to their ability to prove that they can still win trophies, despite the club being saddled with a debt which obstructs their ability to manoeuvre in the transfer market. 

Saturday’s game will be crucial to that. If Barcelona can nudge their noses in front in the hunt for another title, one suspects that it could well be key to persuading the man who has authored so much of their success to stick around for just a little bit longer – and mean that his record-breaking ‘El Clasico’ appearance tally won’t end here.
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