'Totally unacceptable': Community reacts to another bank closure

Mayor Barry Salmon, Heather Salmon, Ipswich Street Stowmarket Halifax

Community figures have been reacting to news of another bank closure in Stowmarket. - Credit: Archant / Stowmarket Town Council

Community figures have been reacting to news of another bank closure in Stowmarket.

Halifax has announced that the branch in the town centre will close later this year.

This comes after HSBC revealed plans to close its branch in the town next month, with Barclays closing their bank in the mid Suffolk town last year.

The branch is in Ipswich Street in Stowmarket.

The branch is in Ipswich Street in Stowmarket. - Credit: Archant

Town mayor, councillor Barry Salmon reacted to the news, saying: "As town mayor, I am disappointed to see the Halifax in Stowmarket is closing, l know this has been a planned closure but I fear it will have an adverse effect on the town.

"I fully understand we are as a society moving toward internet banking and to some extent a cash-free system of making payments but there are still large numbers of people who will find this very difficult.

"We assume everyone is happy to do their banking on their phones and computers but for some this will prove impossible and it can also be difficult for small business so it is sad the closure is happening."

Councillor Dave Muller said he was "very disappointed" to find out about the bank's closure, adding: "There are still many customers who prefer not undertake their financial business either online or by telephone and once again these customers are being let down.

"Approximately 22% of the population do not have access to the internet. The closure will mean customers who wish to deal face to face with the Halifax will now need to travel to either Ipswich or Bury St Edmunds, which they may not be able to do.

"This is totally unacceptable."

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Halifax said the bank will close on November 7. It said transactions in Stowmarket fell by more than 63% between 2017 and 2022.

The bank also said that it is contacting customers to let them know about alternative local banking services.

A Halifax spokesman said: “Visits to our Stowmarket branch have fallen over recent years, as many customers now choose to bank in different ways.

"When the branch closes in November, customers can continue to bank with us at the Post Office on Ipswich Street and can access cash at a number of free ATMs nearby."