A BANK has closed three of its branches in South Lakeland this week.

Barclays shut its doors in Kirkby Lonsdale on January 25, in Windermere on January 27 and Ulverston on January 21.

The company said the closures were due to a ‘dramatic’ drop in footfall, with a spokesman saying customers are increasingly using alternatives to branches to conduct their banking and that there were no redundancies as a result of the closures.

The closures were branded as ‘disappointing’ by Windermere and Bowness’ Mayor, Councillor Adrian Legge, at the time of the announcement last year.

He added however, that many Windermere residents have turned to the town’s post office for banking services.

Windermere Parish Councillor Christine Cook said residents felt ‘badly let down’.

And Councillor for Sedbergh and Kirkby Lonsdale, Kevin Lancaster, said the closure of Kirkby Lonsdale’s branch also had wider reaching impact on people from the Sedbergh area, who lost their Barclays branch several years ago.

The nearest branch is now in Kendal.

Bob Brown, mayor of Ulverston, said he is 'disappointed' for the community following the bank's closure.

He said: "Whilst I recognise that banks, like all businesses, will make their decisions based on their business needs, I am disappointed for the community that they serve.

"Yet another bank has decided to pull out of Ulverston. I know that many businesses are now using mainly electronic forms of payment, but this decision is very frustrating for those local businesses that still deal in cash.”

A Barclays spokesman said: “The decision to close a branch is never an easy one. However, customers are increasingly using alternatives to branches to do their banking. As a result, we are seeing a sustained fall in branch visits across the UK.

“This fall in customer transactions is reflected at Windermere branch (26 per cent reduction in the two years to March 2020) and we also know four-fifths of our customers at the branch are using different ways to bank.”

Natwest is the remaining bank branch open in Kirkby Lonsdale and Windermere while Lloyds, The Cumberland Building Society and Furness Building Society are now the only three remaining banks in Ulverston.