STAFF at Nationwide, the UK’s biggest building society and one of Swindon’s largest employers, are facing up to the fact that there could be more redundancies.

This comes after the society saw its profits fall by almost 50 per cent.

As reported in the Adver last week, pre-tax profits were down to £212million, from £393m a year earlier, with Nationwide pointing to continued low interest rates as being one of the main factors.

Should jobs cuts be around 10 per cent – as has been suggested – then that will mean more than 400 people in Swindon will be looking for a new job by the end of the year as Nationwide employs 4,400 people in the area. Its head office is in Pipers Way, Old Town, pictured.

The company has said it is taking tough action on costs to help limit profit declines, including possible cuts in its administration centre network and possible branch cuts as it looks to reduce overheads following a series of takeovers and amid tough conditions for mortgages and savings.

It is working on plans to reduce branch and retail distribution outlets – currently totalling more than 1,000 – and trim a 20 strong network of back office and administration centres.

The group cut around 800 jobs last year and closed 12 branches, but braced staff for more substantial reductions amid its 15,800 workforce over the next few years, although it said it was too early to give locations of any cutbacks or numbers.