Virgin Money is joining the banking exodus from the high street, closing over 30% of its bank branches with the loss of 260 jobs.
The announcement comes on the heels of a wave of bank branch closures across the UK's biggest banks. Since 2015 over 6,000 bank branches have closed their doors.
"The number of customers using bank branches for day-to-day transactions has been on a downward trajectory for a number of years," Virgin Money said. It added that the branches closing had seen a reduction of 43% in customer transaction volumes.
Some 96% of customers use the branches less than once a month, it added.
The cuts will see 39 bank branches shut down, leaving the bank with a national network of just 91 outlets.
Banking sector union Unite condemned the plans. “While the financial services sector is acquiring eye watering profits, they must start taking their responsibilities to customers and communities more seriously," says Unite general secretary Sharon Graham. "Access to a bank and cash is a fundamental need for all our local high streets. This decision to pull out of these locations will hurt some of the most vulnerable, disabled and digitally excluded customers.”
Virgin Money says that each store is closing within half a mile of the nearest Post office, where customers can access cash and conduct routine transactions.