Newcastle Building Society Set To Start Work On Ponteland Branch Upgrade Release Date: 10 May The North East’s biggest building society is set to start work on upgrading its Ponteland branch. Newcastle Building Society is creating a modern, open plan design at its branch on Broadway in Darras Hall as part of an ongoing, multi-million pound investment programme across its entire branch network. The upgraded branch will provide Society customers with better access to services, information and advice, as well as improved meeting spaces to discuss all aspects of personal financial planning. Refurbishment work had originally been due to start at the beginning of 2019, but after Barclays Bank announced that it was going to close its Ponteland branch at around the same time, the Society made the decision to put back the work so that local residents could retain access to financial services with minimum disruption during the change. The branch will now close at 1pm on Friday 17 May and is expected to reopen around the middle of July, with a celebration event set to follow in August to mark its official reopening. Newcastle Building Society is around halfway through a programme of upgrading or relocating its entire 28 branch network, with work on refurbishing existing branches or creating new ones due to be complete by the end of the year. Stuart Miller, customer director of Newcastle Building Society, said: “While we were keen to get on with this refurbishment, we felt it made sense to hold it back at the start of the year to ensure people in Ponteland weren’t put to too much sudden inconvenience. “The feedback we’ve had from local customers suggests they thought we’d made the right decision, and we’re excited to now be getting on with the job. “We are very much here to stay on the High Street and are continuing to reaffirm our long-term commitment to local communities by investing heavily in maintaining and enhancing a modern branch network that sits right at the heart of our operations, “The reaction we’ve had from customers in locations where we’ve already opened new branches or carried out upgrades to existing offices has been really positive and we’re looking forward to sharing the new facilities with customers in Ponteland. "Our nearby West Denton and Gosforth branches are available to serve them while improvement work is ongoing, and while we are sorry for any inconvenience that the temporary closure of the branch might cause, we think they will like what they see when it reopens."