Barclays is set to close at least 69 branches by the end of 2023, as face-to-face banking becomes less common. While the bank is offering some of its services via the Post Office, some Britons have expressed their concern about what branch closures could mean for them.
Anna Morrish, director at Quibble, uses the Stamford branch of Barclays, which has been confirmed for closure on April 28, 2023. This gives locals just days to make use of the branch.
Ms Morrish explained the closure could create additional complications for the way she runs her business.
She told Express.co.uk she has received two texts from the bank, informing her of the closure and a limited service in-person.
Ms Morrish said: “I won’t be able to pay in any cash I receive personally and as for my business, Quibble, we do a lot of charity work, so, we won’t have anywhere to take the cash in to pay into any charity account. I’m not sure how that process will work.
“It’s also an issue when confirming any kind of identity. If I want a new card, or to add someone so they can have access to the bank account, how can I do this if they have to do this face to face using their systems in-house like when I had to change my maiden name to my married name.
“At the time, when I changed my details, my bank access was limited until I had confirmed my identity in the branch.
“I cannot have that issue whenever I need to confirm someone’s identity. There has to be an online system that’s easily accessible. There has to be improved communication.”
With the closure of her local branch, Ms Morrish explained the nearest in-person Barclays bank is likely to be at least a 30 to 40 minute drive, without traffic.
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She added: “I’ll then have to pay for parking and walk the rest of the way. It is basically a minimum of a 60 minute trip with charges.”
Ms Morrish explained she is “confused” about what the bank is planning next, and has seen similar opinions expressed on neighbourhood app NextDoor.
Some have expressed the alternative of banking with the Post Office, but the director said she was also worried about these closing down in local communities.
She said: “I feel there’s so many unanswered questions – people need to have it outlined, it needs to be clearer.”
However, the issues with bank branch closure may not only extend to businesses.
In fact, Ms Morrish has expressed worry about ageing Britons, many of whom are reliant on in-person services.
She continued: “Many of them rely on cash – I know my nan does.
“She wouldn’t have any access to money to pay the tea lady that comes with groceries or the gardener or other people that help her. Anything new can really confuse her, and so I’d imagine this will really upset her.
“It’s going to fall on her family to find a cash point and get money out for her on a regular basis. Luckily, she has family close by, but many don’t. What are the options for them?”
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Barclays has explained there are “lots of ways to manage your money without leaving your home” and this has created a “big impact” on the number of customers attending their branch.
For the Stamford branch, the provider said three customers use it regularly as the only way to do their banking.
In a statement, the bank said: “We want to reassure you that we’re here to help. We’ll stay in your community and you’ll be able to talk to us in person.
“We’re finalising the details of where we’ll be based, and when, to support you with your banking, and we‘ll share the details locally once confirmed. We’ll be available to help you with things like day-to-day banking queries and helping you manage your money, though there won’t be access to cash at this site.
“We’ll also add the location and opening times on our website – just search ‘Barclays branch finder’.”
Those worried about their local branch closure are encouraged to get in touch with the bank.
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