Burnham-On-Sea’s branch of Barclays Bank is set to close down this autumn after the company claimed that just 179 customers use it regularly for over-the-counter banking.

As we first reported here last week, the branch in Burnham’s Victoria Street will shut for the final time on Friday October 19th, becoming the latest in a string of big name banks to close down in the town.

Richard Stockland, Community Banking Director for Barclays Bristol, Somerset and Wiltshire, told Burnham-On-Sea.com: “The way customers undertake their banking is changing as people increasingly use online, telephone and mobile devices.”

“At Barclays Burnham-On-Sea branch, customer usage has continued to decline and additionally 74% of our branch customers are also using other ways to do their banking such as online and by telephone.”

“We have also identified that we have only 179 customers who solely use the counter to undertake their banking, which is why we have taken the difficult decision to close the branch.”

“We hope that the availability of our nearest Barclays branches in Bridgwater and Weston-super-Mare, plus access to services at any local Post Office including at 6 Victoria Street in Burnham-On-Sea, along with our range of digital channels, will help to ease the transition for our customers.”

The bank revealed the news in a letter to customers, saying: “The decision to close a branch is never an easy one, however we are finding that fewer customers are using the branch to do their everyday banking. Taking into consideration the alternative ways to bank that are available in the area, we have made the decision to close the branch.”

A Burnham-On-Sea Chamber of Trade spokesman said: “The Chamber is extremely disappointed by this news after previous bank closures in Burnham. The closure of this long-standing Barclays branch in our town centre is a blow.”

“Whilst accepting that banking trends are changing, face to face access to financial services for businesses and consumers remains highly important at a local level. We hope Barclays will reconsider this decision and we would call on Nationwide and Lloyds to affirm their commitment to having branches in Burnham.”

NatWest closed its Burnham branch last autumn. The branch, at the junction of Regent Street and Victoria Street, shut on October 10, 2017. It said 53.4 per cent of its customers were using digital banking.

HSBC also closed its branch in Burnham-On-Sea’s College Street at the end of January 2017. HSBC said it had seen a 28 per cent reduction in customers at the branch, prompting the closure.