Closure of Santander branch leaves just one bank in Lytham - but Post Office trade is on the up

And then there was one.

Tuesday, 3rd August 2021, 12:02 pm
Santander bank, in Clifton Street, Lytham, having signage removed the day after it closed for good on July 22, 2021

That’s the situation with banks in Lytham after the closure of the Santander branch left the town with only Lloyds available for personal callers – and that is currently only for four and a half

hours a day two days a week.

It’s a big change in just six years, with six banks in town up until RBS pulled out in August 2015 and the doors having since also been closed for good at NatWest and HSBC (both in 2017)

and Barclays in 2019.

In all cases, the closures have been put down by the banks concerned to change in customer habits to a major shift towards online banking.

St Annes, for instance, still has five banks - NatWest, HSBC, Barclays, Halifax and Santander - despite the recent closure of TSB and of RBS three years ago, while Kirkham has had no

banks at all since RBS were the last to go in early 2019.

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But the closures have brought sadness at the loss of a once-prominent feature of the high street .

“It’s certainly sad to see another bank go from Lytham,” said Michael Sayward, a Lytham representative on Fylde Council who also runs a business in the town centre, just doors away from

the now-closed Santander branch.

“We have a good footfall in Lytham so hopefully the loss of the banks won’t have an adverse effect on that but every time there is a closure, there are people forced to change their banking

routines.

“The banks are constantly reviewing their high street presence and locally it seems more and more as if a bank is in St Annes, it isn’t in Lytham as well. It’s sad to see them

go.”

Tony Croft, postmaster at Crofts newsagents and post office on Warton Street, Lytham said he has seen a surge in business since adding the post office facility four years ago to his long-

established paper shop.

“We see new faces every time a bank closes and the Post Office trade helps sustain the rest of the business,” he said.

“But there are a fair few moans as each closure happens, from the older customers in particular, although they see that most of the banking business they have been used to can be done

at the Post Office.

“We’re open seven days a week and longer hours as well, so hopefully it works in their favour.”

The day after Santander closed in Clifton Street, Lytham on July 22, workmen were at the premises remaining signage and other features.

It was one of around 100 branches across the country to be shut by the Spanish financial giant, with Adam Bishop, Santander’s head of branches, saying at the time the closures were

announced: “Branch usage by customers has fallen considerably over recent years so we have made the difficult decision to consolidate our presence in areas where we have multiple

branches relatively close together.

“We will provide every support to customers of closing branches to find alternative ways to bank with us that best suit their individual needs.”