Handelsbanken received the Bank of the Year in Sweden 2009 from The Banker magazine, which is part of the Financial Times group.

And for the 19th year running it was also named as Bank of the Year by Privata Affärer, a Swedish periodical for private finances.

Nick Lowe, Handelsbanken Bournemouth’s branch manager, said that the awards “tie in with a survey conducted with EPSI Rating in early 2009 that showed levels of customer satisfaction in the UK to be 10 percentage points higher than the next nearest bank.

“Customers tell us they really appreciate being able to talk direct to the decision-makers and not have to use call centres.”