Hundreds of bank branches forced to shut their doors


Hundreds of bank branches forced to shut their doors temporarily as staff fall ill or are forced to self-isolate

Banks are being forced to shut hundreds of their branches temporarily due to staff falling ill or having to self-isolate.

Others are reducing opening hours and warning customers they may need to queue outside in order to comply with social distancing advice. 

Barclays, HSBC, Lloyds, NatWest, Santander and TSB have all now confirmed that they have shut down some branches. 

Closed: Banks are being forced to shut hundreds of their branches temporarily due to staff falling ill or having to self-isolate (file picture: actual branch not necessarily affected) 

Nationwide, Britain’s biggest building society, has also closed 50 of its 650 branches and has cut opening hours at another 450. 

Branch staff are classified as key workers, which means they can still travel to work and send children to school. 

But if they fall ill or need to self-isolate there may not be enough staff to stay open. Branches may also need to shut for a deep-clean if employees working there fall ill. 

Banks are encouraging their customers to use online services, where possible. ATMs located outside banks will remain available for cash withdrawals if a branch is closed. 

A spokesman for banking trade body UK Finance said: ‘Banks and building societies are currently maintaining a business-as-usual service insofar as possible, recognising that it will be necessary to close banks for periods for deep cleaning or where there are staff shortages. 

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