The Nationwide is planning to close five mortgage processing centres with the potential loss of just over 100 jobs as part of an efficiency drive by Britain's biggest building society.

The society told staff yesterday of the intended closures yesterday at Belfast, Sevenoaks, Southampton, Rayleigh and Swansea, and entered a 30-day consultation period with its in-house union.

Nationwide said that if the closures went ahead it would try to place the staff affected in other jobs within the group. A spokeswoman said it was too early to say whether all the staff could be relocated.

The Independent