'Staggering' number of bank branches have shut

Almost two-thirds of the UK's bank branches have shut their doors over the past 30 years, research indicates.
The scale of the closures has sparked warnings that millions of people are struggling to access vital financial services and the cash that they need.
Official records show that, in 1988, banks and building societies had 20,583 branches - but analysis by the consumer group Which? suggests this number has plummeted to just 7,586 branches now.It means a fifth of people now live nearly two miles from their nearest branch, while almost one in 10 has to travel more than three miles.
'Staggering' number of bank branches have shut

The industry says decisions to close branches are 'never taken lightly'
Although people can access their high street bank accounts at the Post Office, a survey of more than 2,000 people found many people are unaware they can use the network for everyday banking services.Which? also points out not all the services offered by banks are currently available at the Post Office, and that customers still need to call into a local branch for some transactions.The consumer group said that, as many communities have been faced with a double whammy of bank and cash machine closures, action is needed to ensure people are not financially excluded.
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