Only a couple of months ago 18a Productions opened a business bank account with HSBC. They seemed as good as anyone else, and we’d heard good reports. And out of the 2 banks only a short walk away, they were the ones who returned our call, unlike Barclays.

After a couple of meetings with a less than alert Bank Manager, who knew less about interest rates than we did – it was open.

So I was less than amused earlier today to call in – and queue as usual – only to see a sign saying that our branch is closing on the 1st February 2008! (The ‘8’ of 2008 was written in permanent marker on the glossy printed poster – very professional – almost as bad as Tesco). You’re not telling me they didn’t know about that planned closure when we opened our account 2 months ago?! When we stated we were opening an account with them because the branch was so handy?! I was given a list of alternative branches – all a drive or a 45 minute walk away. So much for “The World’s Local Bank”!

And seeings you ALWAYS have to queue in there, it’s not like they’ve got a lack of demand!

This is just the latest in our string of problems with HSBC –
When the paper work started arriving for our new account – the company names they were coming up with ranged from silly to absurd. Sometimes using my Surname, sometimes using Tom’s name and the 1st 3 letters of mine! No mention of 18a Productions anywhere!

The worst, which used my Surname twice on following lines, was on a Customer Services Questionnaire! Needless to say they’re getting an interesting reply!

This was all after we were informed we HAD to take out a Company Charge card – like a credit card. We didn’t want to but were told we had no choice if we wished to proceed with the account – and seeings we’d already wasted hours with the dopey bank manager, we agreed rather than start again down the road. It was fine – because the card was free… this year. There would be a charge however after the 1st year… a charge for each card and we had to have 2. Bringing the total to £80 for something we didn’t want! So as soon as we’d left the bank we had to ring up and go through the process of canceling the card, which we could do at any stage – but wanted to do it whilst it was fresh in our minds rather than forget and get charged in 12 months… like they hope you’ll do.

So now we’re faced with closing that account and opening one with Barclays afterall – or only being able to visit the bank when we have a couple of hours to spare!