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RBS chief flies in for branches' relaunch

Sir Howard Davies in Island for ceremonies

One of the most prominent names in British banking will be in the Island today (8 March) to mark the relaunch of two Isle of Man Bank branches.

Chairman of Royal Bank of Scotland Sir Howard Davies will formally open the revamped Athol Street and Regent Street branches, alongside Chief Minister Howard Quayle and other VIP guests.

The day will also mark the opening of a new NatWest branch in Athol Street, after the bank relocated from Victoria Street.

The official opening of Isle of Man Bank's Regent Street branch will take place at 11.30am, with a ceremony at the Athol Street branch in the heart of the capital's business district at 3.15pm. 

Events are planned at both locations throughout the day, with showcases of local artisan businesses, free samples and displays of local photographs.

Staff will be on hand to offer financial health checks and show-off improvements which include the latest 'state-of-the-art' ATMs, a coin counting and deposit machine and a business bag drop facility.

A heritage wall at the historic Athol Street branch will tell the story of the branch's history and association with Douglas.

In what is billed 'a careful and sympathetic modernisation', the grand dome area has been opened up and barriers between staff and customers removed.

The ornate banking counter has been donated to the Friends of the Gaiety Theatre to be incorporated in a front of house refurbishment.

Sir Howard Davies who was appointed chairman of the banking giant in 2015, chaired the UK Airports Commission whose final report recommended a new runway at Heathrow was the best option for expanding aviation capacity.

He will be accompanied today by the CEO of RBS International Andrew McLaughlin.

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