THE owner of Clydesdale Bank has put plans to change its branch names and branding to Virgin Money on hold until its next financial year as it focuses on its response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Virgin Money had been on schedule to phase out the Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank names by October under a process which would have seen a further branch closures and redundancies.

But the bank told the City this morning that the changes have been delayed to “maximise impact and defer associated costs”.

The decision was announced as the bank made a £232 million provision against losses on loans increasing because of the pressures brought by the pandemic.

The impairment dragged profits for the six months to March 31 lower to £120m, compared with £286m for the same period a year earlier.

Virgin merged with CYBG, the former owner of Clydesdale and Yorkshire banks, in a £1.9 billion deal announced in April 2018.