Wee Waa Chamber of Commerce will enlist the support of ANZ Bank customers in the district to try and convince the bank not to shut its Wee Waa branch.
The branch is due to be closed in March next year, to the dismay of its Wee Waa customers and the chamber.
The closure was top of the agenda at a meeting of the Wee Waa Chamber of Commerce last week.
The meeting agreed that the chamber would enlist the active support of ANZ customers – farmers, corporate clients, small business people and residents.
The chamber meeting, attended by Narrabri Shire mayor Ron Campbell, was joined by ANZ district manager, NSW North West, Kim Sills and ANZ small business area manager Kate Loveday, in an online ‘Zoom’ discussion.
Speakers argued that they believed the data driving the bank’s decision did not give the whole picture and that apart from the significant volume of business from Wee Waa district through ANZ, the bank which has had a presence in Wee Waa for 120 years, owed a historic obligation to the community.
The bank representatives said the ‘decision had not been taken lightly.’
Banking habits had changed and customer data revealed a 40 per cent decline in customer use of the Wee Waa branch in the past five years.
“Unfortunately, the bank won’t be able to reverse its decision,” Ms Sills said.
Chamber member Richard Schwager said the reduction in traffic had been a ‘self fulfilling prophecy’.
“Branch opening hours have been progressively reduced to three hours a day for three days a week,” he said.
“Naturally, customer traffic is reduced.”
Cr Campbell said he would take the closure issue to ‘the highest levels’ on behalf of the community and explore options and compromise.
He said Narrabri Shire was poised for massive development which would flow to Wee Waa community.To order photos from this page click here