Tuesday 1 April 2008


To know our past, is to know our future. So goes the age old saying.

However the occupants of 14 Shields Street, Cairns, don't seem to care much for our history.

Thanks to an eagle-eyed CairnsBlog lurker, he spotted this newly-installed sign today.

It appears at the Shields Street Branch of the National Australia Bank. This is directly opposite the children's' playground, City Place.

So what's the problem? Not one, but two errors.

The sign reads "sheild street". The correct spelling is "Shields".

The rather blatant faux pax was quickly pointed out to the NAB staff today, but they didn't seem to care. "So, what should we do about it?"

I then telephoned the NAB 'customer service' hotline, and after 18 minutes on hold, I got someone in a call centre who didn't know where Cairns was. Maybe it was my Kiwi accent?
Shields Street is named after a well-known Cairns family, William Tennant Shields. Shields was the manager of the Queensland
National Bank, beginning at Georgetown, then Cooktown and finally moving to Cairns. I beat William Shields named the address of his bank correctly.
Even the Cairns Post in May 1925, got the spelling correct:
    Damage estimated at £150 was caused to a hearse and mourning coach, by fire, at a late hour on Saturday night, and the Shields Street building in which they were housed had a narrow escape from destruction.

Come on National Australia Bank, when you going to fix up your sign?


Anonymous said...

Banks don't care about anything except making money. Please dont think you can get in to see a Manager and lodge a complaint about dodgy customer serivce and incorrect advice given out by bank staff either. I was told by the Westpac Bank staff in Lake Street that "Narelle (the female manager) never sees clients." Too high and mighty in her rarefied loftiness to mix with the common herd!!!!
I have thus cancelled all my accounts there. Goodbye Westpac!

Anonymous said...

Dish Pig, Bank Managers are not what they used to be. They used to be the person to speak to. Now, I think you will find this across most banks, that they aren't up to date with products and regular customers. They don't speak to customers. This is because they are required by higher managers (who do nothing as well) that they need to do reports, OHS stuff, teleconferences, all sorts of crap.

I'm a past Bank Manager, and quit because it wasn't what I wanted. Why sit on the phone for 3 teleconferences a week, keeping everyone in the loop almost daily regarding sales stats - when you have a line of customers outside your door that you can help. The crap reporting and constant reporting to those higher took all the time I could have spent helping customers and building rapport, so I quit.

Sadly, the old days of seeing your Bank Manager are gone. And I can honestly say, even if you could speak with your manager - wouldn't be worth it. They rarely know complex issues, don't do any study on Banking or Finance, and are merely HR type people. Certainly aren;t high and mighty, and quite often, aren;t actually paid that well either.... You need to find a good Cust. Service Rep that knows their stuff, and approach them. They may be better, as they have aspirations and can be determined to do a good job - to be promoted.

Plus, why were bank staff giving you advice? They aren't trained with any qualifications....