Lloyds announces closure of Portchester branch - but tells customers to use ATMs at two stores set to close
Customers at a Lloyds branch earmarked for closure are furious that the bank has told them to use ATMs at two shops also due to close down.
Declining use and an increase of online banking were behind the reason for the bank in West Street, Portchester to close, according to a spokesman from the company.
He said: ‘We have made the difficult decision to close Portchester on August 25 due to the changing ways customers choose to bank with us, which means the branch is being used less often.
‘We are sorry for any inconvenience this may cause.’
Lloyds Banking Group has announced it is to shut 56 banks across the country, including the Halifax in Palmerston Road in Southsea and the Lloyds in The Square, Wickham.
A profile of the branch’s use found that counter transactions have decreased by 17 per cent and cashpoint transactions are down 15 per cent for personal account customers compared with last year.
But a councillor has accused the company of ‘not doing its homework’ after it suggested customers 'continue to bank locally by visiting the nearby Post Office’ - which is in a branch of McColl’s that is due to close.
The McColl’s store, in West Street, Portchester, is set to shut on Saturday, July 18.
In its branch profile, Lloyds also highlighted another cash machine in the Co-op in West Street - which is due to close in February as the building is up for sale.
Councillor Roger Price, of Portchester East ward, said: ‘I’m shocked that (Lloyds) is shutting because there is without a shadow of a doubt a need for a branch in Portchester.
‘Their profile says that 58 per cent of their customers are over 55.
‘So they’ve got it wrong - it shows there is a need for the branch.
‘And they identify cash machines that are in shops due to close.
‘They haven’t done their homework.’
Cllr Price also said there would be an increase in customers over the next five years with more than 700 homes earmarked to be built in the area and plans to double the capacity of nearby sheltered accommodation in Assheton Court.