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Lloyds to close 49 bank branches

Lloyds Banking Group is to close a further 49 branches – resulting in 99 job losses.

The union Unite said the bank has informed staff of the closures, which will involve Halifax, Bank of Scotland and Lloyds Bank branches.

Earlier this year Lloyds announced that it would close 100 branches between July and October this year.

The bank said these closures were the result of fewer branch transactions as customers increasingly choose digital and mobile channels for their everyday banking needs.

A Lloyds Banking Group spokesman said: “As a consequence the number of customers visiting some of our branches has declined in recent year. In response we have confirmed the location of some branches which will close next year.”

He added that even after these closures, the group expects to have the biggest branch network in the UK. “Around 95 per cent of Lloyds Bank customers and 90 per cent of Halifax and Bank of Scotland customers will have still have a usable branch within five miles of their home, after these changes have been made.”

Bank branches earmarked for closure include both rural and suburban branches. Those named in this list of 49 include the Midlands & East Halesworth branch, North Ripon, North Pocklington, Greater London Perivale and North Broomhill Sheffield.

Unite national officer Rob MacGregor urged Lloyds to halt this closure programme. “Local communities are making it clear that these closure of their local branch excludes customers who cannot use digital means to conduct their financial transactions.”

They also called for the bank to ensure that there were no compulsory redundancies as a result of these cuts. Macgregor adds that having returned to profitability Lloyds Bank need to focus more on its corporate social responsibilities.

Lloyds Banking Group adds that it now has 30 mobile branches serving over 170 communities across Scotland, England and Wales.

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