Bank closures give cause for concern

SH 031114 Lloyds Bank, Southwick Square, Photo by Derek Martin SUS-140311-133657001
SH 031114 Lloyds Bank, Southwick Square, Photo by Derek Martin SUS-140311-133657001

FEARS are mounting high as residents could stand to lose their local bank following Lloyds’ announcement to close 150 branches across the UK.

Last month, the popular high street bank released a strategic update report which stated the company’s intention to make a ‘net reduction of 150 branches’, but promised that customers would still be within five miles of a major bank.

Although it is yet to be decided which branches are to close, many Shoreham and Southwick residents have shared their concern on Facebook over the potential loss of their local branches.

The report states: “We are committed to maintaining or growing our share of branches and will optimise our network by consolidating mainly urban branches in overlapping locations. We anticipate this will lead to a net reduction of about 150 branches.

“Over 90 per cent of Lloyds and Bank of Scotland customers will continue to have a usable branch within five miles of their home.”

However, resident David Gordon posted on Facebook’s ‘The New Shoreham-by-Sea Group’ that it would be difficult for him to travel further afield.

He said: “I use Lloyds. I don’t have internet at home, very limited on mobile, and I have a serious disability that makes using banks further away or in populated areas difficult.

“I barely cope with quiet little Shoreham, but going to a place with people I don’t know causes a reaction that makes me very uncomfortable.”

Louisa De-Ville said: “Some elderly residents would not be able to manage to bank online and wouldn’t be able to travel to get to their nearest branch.”

Liz Rylance, of Southwick, said: “I changed my bank account to Lloyds when I moved to Southwick 20-plus years ago as I wanted a local bank.

“They are a great team and very helpful and I’ll be gutted if it closes. Will probably make me change banks again.”

Laura Scott, of Shoreham, said: “It would be inconvenient for us as a business as we would have to go to Worthing all the time when our office is based in Shoreham.”

Lloyds was approached to comment on its announcement but did not provide a response regarding the closures.

The report also stated that it would expect to lose 9,000 full time jobs by 2017.