This summer, National Bank branches in Vankleek Hill, Alfred, and Bourget will close.

In a letter sent to its customers on February 9, Vankleek Hill’s National Bank branch announced it will be closing in August of 2017. The branch on Vankleek Hill’s Main Street will be closing on August 11 at 12 p.m. The letter says an AMB will remain in Vankleek Hill, and all customer accounts will be sent to the National Bank branch in Hawkesbury, unless a customer requests a different branch. On Friday, branch manager Isabelle Nadeau confirmed the branch will be merging with the one in Hawkesbury.

Bank spokesperson Jean-François Cadieux said Alfred will be closed and “merged” with the Rockland branch on August 11, while Bourget customers will be transferred to the Casselman branch on August 18. AMBs will remain in Bourget and Alfred as well.

Cadieux said the branches are being closed because fewer people are doing their banking in person in those communities. “Close to 80 per cent of our clients’ transactions are done via electronic tools, such as the web, and this proportion has been increasing consistently over the past couple of years. So we’ve noticed clients at our branches are using our services less frequently for their day to day banking at the counter. Instead they’re using other channels,” he said.

Not all of the jobs at the branches will be transferred to the new locations, said Cadieux. Five Vankleek Hill jobs will be transferred to Hawkesbury, and one will be eliminated. Of the three employees of the Bourget branch, one will be transferred to Casselman. Six of seven jobs at the Alfred branch will be transferred to Rockland.