“Long live the branch…”

“We are opening branches, not closing them.”

💡 A brilliant, insightful day at the building societies conference, and a great chance to present on the importance to our places of ‘banking services’, and the buildings they are and have been in.

Image thanks to Zoe Campbell Photography

Learned a huge amount to take to the town centres we have #TheVacantShopsAcademy commissions in, and for the wider #highstreet #placemaking conversation about the role of financial services.

📈 A real positivity in the room about the importance of branches, and ways to build on that through innovation and collaborations – as examples with public services, community groups, arts & crafts – which, tbh, runs counter to a lot of the outside narrative we’re more used to hearing:

  • “Our passion for place: why branches matter.”
  • “Long live the branch.”
  • “Nearly half our branches have free community space.”

Thank you to Stuart Fearn MBE and GLORY for the invite, to Richard Fearon and his team for hosting, and to all my fellow speakers, especially Chris Sands at Totally Locally.

📸 A quick visit to Leeds but 💯 a city to return to and study more…!

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