last bank closes its doors after 137-year history
last remaining bank shut down on Friday (July 25th), ending a
long history of banking in the town.
branch in the town, pictured, closed for the final time following
a sharp decline in the number of its customers.
"The number of customers using this branch has dropped by
nearly a fifth over the last few years," a spokeswoman for
the Royal Bank of Scotland Group, which owns NatWest, told Burnham-On-Sea.com.
branch has only been open for 14.5 hours a week recently and there
were only 30 customers who regularly used the branch each week."
closure ends a long history of banking at the site. The building
is part of the Highbridge Heritage Trail and a sign on its side
states that it was built as Stuckey's Bank in 1877.
and Highbridge Mayor Cllr Martin Cox, right, said: "It is
a great shame and the end of an era for the town."
people in Highbridge will have used this bank over the years,
but times change and the way we use banks is different now to
how it used to be. Highbridge still has many shops and businesses,
though, and the heart of the town is still alive."
NatWest spokeswoman added: "Over our whole branch network
there has been a 30% drop in branch transactions since 2010 as
people do their banking when and where it is convenient for them,
such as by telephone, in Post Offices and online."
have an arrangement with the local Post Office, which is near
the branch, that allows our customers to withdraw cash, check
balances and pay bills free of charge."
She added: "For customers who have basic bank accounts with
the Highbridge branch, they will have their restrictions lifted
and will be able to use ATMs from other banks in the area. There
are four NatWest ATMs within a three mile distance of the branch."
"The nearest NatWest branch is 1.9 miles away in Burnham-On-Sea
and were significantly investing in its refurbishment in
2014 to improve the service we offer customers. This will include
installing new technology and other improvements that will allow
our staff to better serve our customers."
of the closure was first announced in May this year, as we reported