Westpac Corp the owners of the Bank of Melbourne Acland St branch that closed over a year ago have removed signage from the independent shop Eclectico which occupies the whole space above the former bank.
Owner Alan Cartmell who we interviewed for this story couldn’t believe it when he turned up for work on Monday morning. The vinyl signage which cost over $900 and was professionally designed and installed had become a familiar and well-loved sight on Acland St and gave some life and colour to the almost decimated retail strip.
Instead, it seems that a big corporation such as Westpac has no regard for small businesses or the community. With Eclectico having now been closed by government mandate for the COVID crisis for 9 out of the last 16 months it is fighting to keep its business alive.
“It was actually my own property manager that went out of his way to inform the bank of my signage which I decided to install after repeatedly cleaning off graffiti from the black plastic window covering next to my shop doorway.”
I received a phone call from the Leasing Executive from Westpac Corp telling me it had to be removed and that he would email me. I have never received an email from him and assumed that he had changed his mind because of the bad publicity that this would obviously bring to the Bank of Melbourne, which has already caused the ire of many of its customers in St Kilda by closing both it’s Acland St and Carlisle St branches without ever even informing their customers. I know this for certain because I was actually one of them.
I will certainly be closing my Bank of Melbourne and Westpac bank accounts this week after 20 years with each of them Alan said today.