After the closure of HSBC, NatWest and Lloyds in Rye, the only major bank left – Barclays – announced that they had no plans to close their branch.
Today, Friday, January 18, however a letter (below) was received by Barclays customers advising that the branch will indeed close on Friday, May 10, but easing the pain with the good news that they could use the nearest alternative branch at Tenterden. This is 10 miles away, 20 minutes by car plus petrol cost or 40 minutes by bus plus fare. Inconvenient for the many businesses in Rye who regularly bank cash and cheques and no less inconvenient for some of the town’s older residents who may not be so keen on using the internet.
However there is, Barclays say, an alternative which is the local post office where cheques and cash can be paid in (although they don’t say whether there would be any delay in clearing cheques when paid-in in this way). There are, of course, three other banks that have already sent the same advice to their customers so it will remain to be seen whether Jempson’s will have enough trained staff at their Post Office counter to avoid the build-up of lengthy queues and long waiting periods at certain times of the day.
Nationwide is still open for business but deals in retail banking only at the moment although last November it announced that it was proposing to offer a business current account that would be suitable for small businesses.
Image Credits: Kenneth Bird, Rye News library.