Taxpayer-owned RBS is closing 259 branches around the country


If you're one of the many customers likely to be affected, what can you do?

The two branches in Shropshire are part of 197 Natwest and 62 RBS outlets being shut down by Royal Bank of Scotland.

RBS says it will close 259 branches and cut 680 jobs as it reduces costs and encourages customers to use online and mobile services.

NatWest spokesperson Kate Visser said: "Since 2012 we have seen the way in which people use NatWest Gainsborough branch change dramatically, with now 86 per cent of customers already banking in other ways locally".

RBS said that since 2014 the number of customers using branches had fallen by 40% and mobile transactions had increased by 73%.

However, RBS hopes to limit the number of redundancies to 680 by redeploying the remaining staff.

These alternatives are set to include Community Bankers, Mobile Banks on Wheels and Post Offices, with the banking group stressing that "we're providing our customers with more ways to bank than ever before - they can choose from a range of digital to face-to-face options ... so that we can reach even more customers".

However, union Unite described the move as a "betrayal" and ripped into the Government for allowing the closures to proceed.

He added: "The Royal Bank of Scotland has made a decision to decimate its bank branch network".

Rob MacGregor, national officer at Unite, which is representing staff across RBS, believes "serious questions need to be asked about whether these closures mark the end of branch network banking". Why is the Government signing off this alarming branch closure program?

Scotland's Business Minister Paul Wheelhouse said the latest announcement was "hugely concerning" and that the worst-hit customers would be "the most vulnerable members of society, for many of whom going into a branch is the only feasible way to conduct their banking".