MAJOR banks are closing down high street locations at an alarming rate leaving some towns at risk of having no branch at all.
It comes as banks such as Barclays, HSBC and NatWest look to move more of their services online.
In November alone 82 branches left our high streets for good including Lloyds, Halifax and Bank of Scotland.
There is also more to come this month, as a further 19 branches will shut down by the end of the year.
Barclays is shutting 11 branches while Lloyds is closing one and the Bank of Scotland three.
Meanwhile, Virgin Money is closing two, Halifax one and NatWest one, according to data from LINK.
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LINK is the UK's largest cash machine network and it keeps track of any planned branch closures.
With so many branches closing down, it is leaving many towns at risk of having no bank branches at all.
The closure of one branch in February 2024 will leave 555 square miles of the Peak District National Park "bankless", reports the Daily Mail.
Bakewell is the last remaining town in the Peak District National Park with a bank branch.
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However, next year NatWest will shut up its remaining branch in the town, much to the annoyance of residents and businesses.
What's worse is that this is not a unique situation and many more areas of the country could find themselves in the same boat.
Many towns across the UK have just one remaining bank branch, we have the full list below:
- Ballymoney, County Antrim – Danske
- Bolsover, Derbyshire – Lloyds
- Cleckheaton, West Yorkshire – Virgin Money
- Colne, Lancashire – Santander
- Dolgellau, Gwynedd – HSBC
- Erskine, Renfrewshire – Bank of Scotland
- Fleetwood, Lancashire – Halifax
- Flint, Flintshire – TSB
- Glossop, Derbyshire – Lloyds
- Guisborough, North Yorkshire – HSBC
- Holywell, Flintshire – Santander
- Ilkley, West Yorkshire – Santander
- Jarrow, South Tyneside – Lloyds
- Kirkby Lonsdale, Cumbria – Nat West
- Lampeter, Ceredigion – HSBC
- Linlithgow, West Lothian – Bank of Scotland
- Moreton in Marsh, Gloucestershire – Lloyds
- Norbury, South London – Nat West
- Okehampton, Devon – Lloyds
- Pickering, North Yorkshire – Barclays
- Portishead, Somerset – Nat West
- Renfrew, Renfrewshire – Bank of Scotland
- Ripon, North Yorkshire – HSBC
- Saxmundham, Suffolk – HSBC
- Somerton, Somerset – Lloyds
- Spennymoor, County Durham – Lloyds
- Storrington, West Sussex – HSBC
- Totnes, Devon – Lloyds
- Wednesbury, West Midlands – Lloyds
- Whitchurch, Shropshire – Lloyds
The largest number of closures announced this year has been Barclays branches, with the bank saying 185 of its sites are set to shut.
Lloyds is second with 131, followed by NatWest with 116, Halifax with 94, Virgin Money with 40, Bank of Scotland with 32, Ulster Bank with 10, TSB with nine, Royal Bank of Scotland with five, and one Nationwide branch.
Just last week Lloyds banking group announced it would be closing another 45 of its high street branches next year.
The banking group confirmed 22 Halifax branches, 19 Lloyds branches and four under Bank of Scotland will be shut down.
Lloyds is set to close the bulk of the branches in March and April next year, with some also closing in August and a tranche in November.
It means that at least 276 branches will be shut across Lloyds, Halifax and Bank of Scotland this year and next.
What to do if your local bank branch closes
While losing a physical branch might not affect some people, there are a lot of people who do reply on going to their local branch.
Closures can be a worry, particularly for elderly people in rural areas who do not have access to the internet.
If you have concerns about the closure of your local bank branch there are some options open to you.
A lot of daily banking tasks can be carried out at the post office.
You won't be able to apply for a loan or open a new bank account, but you will be able to do basic banking.
If you do not know where your nearest post office branch is, you can use the locator tool on its website.
Meanwhile, many banks offer a mobile banking service – where they bring a bus to your area offering services you can usually get at a physical branch.
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Other banks use buildings such as village halls or libraries to offer mobile banking services.
It's worth contacting your bank to see what services they have available, and when they might next be in your area.
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