The last bank is set to shut its doors in Thornton Heath after Barclays announced the closure of its branch – bringing to an end to 128 years of local banking.
Barclays and its predecessors have been in Thornton Heath since 1889 with the current building opening in November 1967 (pictured 1968) on the corner of the Ambassador House forecourt.
Staff in Thornton Heath branch will be offered positions at other nearby branches when the bank closes on December 1.
The decision was greeted with disappointment by customers with one saying: “This is ridiculous. It’s always busy so how can that be right?”
Another said: “Bit of a shock that there won’t be any banks local to me anymore.”
Many where concerned about the impact on the elderly who don’t have access to the internet or mobile phones.
HSBC shut on the High Street in July last year for similar reasons with its building sat empty ever since and is now covered in illegal fly posters.
The Barclays at The Pond was also closed and recently sold to chicken chain KFC who reopened it as a takeaway and restaurant.
In the months leading up to the closure Barclays says it will be proactively engaging with local businesses and the wider community to discuss the alternative ways customers will be able to undertake their banking.
This will include hosting ‘tea and teach’ sessions at the branch for customers wishing to explore alternatives to branch banking.
Paul Turpin, Community Banking Director for Barclays in South London said:“Our records show a falling level of transactions at the branch and over 80 per cent of the customers of the branch are already using alternative forms of banking including online, mobile or telephone banking.”
This closure means the nearest branches will be in Norbury. Everyday transactions can also be completed at any Post Office wth the closest being on the High Street.
Picture credit: The Barclays Group Archive. First picture shows the bank the original bank