Lloyds Banking Group is shutting 44 more bank branches for good across England and Wales this year, it has announced today.
Looking to ramp up numbers banking online, the group said it was closing 29 Lloyds Bank branches and 15 Halifax sites. In a bid to justify the move, Lloyds’ retail director, Vim Maru, said the lender had seen ‘significantly fewer transactions’ at the 44 branches over the last five years.
Banks have stepped up branch closures after many paused restructuring for much of last year to focus on responding to the pandemic. One affected branch user, who wished to remain anonymous, told This is Money: ‘In reality, the key reason banks are closing branches is purely and simply to save costs.
‘Digital banking reduces their costs, but offers a lesser device to customers with a maze of menu options and poorly designed apps.’ So far in 2021 the group has announced 100 branch closures for this year. Fifty-six closed in March and April and the 44 announced today will shut between September and November.
Mr Maru said: ‘Of the closures the Group has announced today, over a third are branches situated in or around cities and large towns, with another branch very close by.