Town to lose ‘vital’ Barclays bank branch – MP writes to chief executive

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A Devon town will soon lose a “vital” bank branch due to what the bank calls “a decline in transactions”. The decision to close the bank has been challenged by the area’s MP.

Holsworthy is set to lose its branch of Barclays Bank on Friday, October 13, unless complaints from the town and its MP can make a difference. According to the bank decisions to close branches are never taken “lightly” and all customers will be notified of the changes.

Acting community banking director for Barclays Devon and Cornwall Andrea Edge said: “The way customers undertake their banking is changing as people increasingly use online, telephone and mobile devices.

“At Barclays’ Holsworthy branch, customer usage has continued to decline and on average 42% of our customers now regularly use alternative branches, which is why we have taken the difficult decision to close it.

“We hope that the availability of our nearest Barclays branch at 2 The Strand Bude, and access to services at the local Post Office located at 13 The Square, Holsworthy, along with our range of digital channels will help to ease the transition for our customers.”

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In a letter to the chief executive of Barclays, Torridge and West Devon MP Geoffrey Cox expressed his disappointment with the announcement and has urged the chief executive to reconsider the decision citing the “undue financial and personal difficulty” the decision will impose on local businesses and individuals. The potential closure means the nearest branch will be in Bude.

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Mr Cox commented today: “I have made it clear to Barclays that banking facilities are vital in rural communities where a large number of elderly people and local businesses do not have easy access to transport or readily available access to fast internet speeds.

“They rely on their local bank for everyday transactions and cannot depend exclusively on online banking.”

The closure of Barclays Bank in Holsworthy comes after complaints in Torrington about the replacement mobile bank van put in place by Lloyds after the closure of its branch in the town.