Facebook campaign launched to save Baldock branch of Lloyds, set to close in August after 210 years
- Credit: Archant
A campaign has been launched to save Baldock’s branch of Lloyds, which the bank has confirmed will close for the last time in August after 210 years.
The movement began on Facebook yesterday afternoon, within hours of Lloyds’ announcement that Baldock was one of 100 branches set to close over the next six months.
Registering her support for the campaign, one customer wrote: “I normally bank elsewhere, but I opened an account with Lloyds specifically because they have a branch in Baldock so I didn’t have to travel to bank!”
Lloyds plan to close the High Street branch on August 7, and a spokesman told the Comet it was a ‘difficult decision’.
He said: “The closure is due to the changing ways customers choose to bank with, which has resulted in customers using it less often.
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“We apologise for any inconvenience that this may cause and have informed customers of the closest alternative branch, which is in Letchworth.”
He added that 73 per cent of Baldock branch personal customers use other branches and other banking methods such as online and telephone banking.
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Baldock will now only have one bank – Barclays in Whitehorse Street.
The Lloyds branch was established by maltster John Williamson and brewer Samuel Wells in 1807 – initially under the name Williamson & Co, later Williamson & Wells – with the current premises dating back to 1861.
It has been a branch of Lloyds since 1918, when the chain bought the Capital and Counties Bank.
Historically it operated as Williamson & Wells from 1810 to 1830, and was a branch of Wells, Hogge & Company – also known as the Biggleswade & Baldock Bank – from 1830 to 1893.
Baldock Town councillor Jim McNally expressed dismay after the closure was announced yesterday.
He told the Comet: “I am really sorry that Baldock is to lose yet another bank in its High Street.
“This strikes a blow at those people who are not computer literate and prefer face-to-face interaction, rather than a ‘nameless’ person on a phone, or computer banking.
“It is a pity that banks seem to be withdrawing from the communities that they purport to serve and does not help to re-establish public confidence in their activity.”
You can find out more about the campaign to save the bank at facebook.com/SaveLloydsBaldock.