Bothwell set to lose its last bank branch

Bank of Scotland in Bothwell is closing for good.

Bank of Scotland in Bothwell is closing for good.

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It might be one of the most prosperous villages in Lanarkshire, but Bothwell is to lose its only bank branch this summer.

Bank of Scotland has announced it is to close its premises in Main Street. It follows the closure of the Clydesdale Bank branch in the village less than 18 months ago.

From June the nearest bank branches will be in Uddingston.

Bank of Scotland blamed falling transactions in Bothwell for its decision. Regular customers - personal and business - are down to around a dozen a week. It pointed out that customers can withdraw cash for free at the post office 100 yards away and there are 38 free cash machines within three miles of Bothwell.

Central Scotland MSP Margaret Mitchell, who lives in Bothwell, was disappointed but not surprised by the closure decision.

She said: “It’s good to have a visible bank presence, particularly for elderly people who tend not to use online banking.

“However, I’m afraid it’s a sign that more and more people are shifting to doing banking from the comfort of their own home as opposed to physically going to a branch.

“I’m sorry to see it go especially as it’s the last bank branch in Bothwell. There’s something good about being able to arrange a face to face meeting in close proximity to where you live.”

The former Clydesdale Bank branch has been converted to a dance studio for young people. Mrs Mitchell hopes the Bank of Scotland building at the corner of Main Street and Griqua Terrace doesn’t lie empty for long and a new use can be found that will see it remain “an asset to the village”.

A Bank of Scotland spokesman said: “We have made the decision to close our Bothwell branch in June. This is because we have another branch close by that allows us to serve customers in the local area.

“We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause and have informed customers of the closest alternative branch in Uddingston, 1.5 miles away.”