The countdown to the end of a long-serving business in Delhi is underway now that the Bank of Montreal is withdrawing front-line services from the community.
The 203-year-old financial institution takes its leave in Delhi on Sept. 11. As announced in February, the Langton branch closed in August. A full-service automated teller machine re-opened in its place beside the Langton post office. Plans are to open a similar ATM in Delhi.
Jim Norman, president of the Delhi and District Chamber of Commerce, said the community is sorry to see the departure of a cornerstone business in the core. The branch has long occupied a high-profile location at the intersection of King and Main streets.
On a positive note, Norman said the Delhi branches of TD-Canada Trust and the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC) continue to serve the community. As well, Norman doubts the Bank of Montreal building will stay vacant for long.
“It’s certainly a prime storefront, and it’s very well maintained,” he said. “It would be a good location for any business.”
The closure in Langton and the pending closure in Delhi is part of a trend in Norfolk driven primarily by two factors – the decline in tobacco farming and the increasing popularity of online services, banking among them.
ATM’s have also increased in sophistication to the point where many financial transactions can be conducted on a self-serve basis.
Other towns in Norfolk that have seen bank closures in recent years include Waterford and Port Rowan. The Bank of Montreal on Alice Street closed several years ago after many decades in Waterford.
For its part, CIBC closed its branch in Port Rowan a year ago, leaving the lakeside community without a bricks-and-mortar financial institution.
BMO’s customers in Langton have been re-assigned to the BMO branch at 160 Broadway St. in Tillsonburg.
BMO customers in Delhi have been re-routed to the BMO branch in Simcoe at 23 Norfolk St. S.
“At both locations, customers will receive an expanded suite of services, including personal, business banking, and investment services to accommodate customer wants and needs,” BMO said in a statement earlier this year.
“While accounts will be moved to specific branches, customers are welcome and able to conduct their day-to-day banking at any BMO branch or ATM.”