THE Royal Bank of Scotland has announced it will close its Barry branch in July this year.

Bosses said it had taken the “difficult decision” to close its branch on July 26 - saying the way people bank had changed radically over the last few years.

RBS announced the closure as part of plans to cut 162 branches and axe 792 jobs across the UK.

The bank said, since 2012, it had seen the way in which people use branch offices change, with 67 per cent of customers already banking in other ways locally.

Transactions at Barry had reduced by 46 per cent since 2012 with only 49 customers now visiting the branch on a regular weekly basis.

It said customers were choosing to do more of their banking on their mobile phone or online

An RBS spokesman said: “We have developed technology which means that customers of Royal Bank of Scotland can also now use NatWest branches for their everyday banking, such as withdrawing cash, checking balances or paying in (and vice versa).

“Personal and business customers will be able to access a range of services at either a Royal Bank of Scotland or NatWest branch, including payments, international services, account detail changes and mandates.

“In order to support our Royal Bank of Scotland customers with these services and their banking needs, we will dedicate members of staff to nearby NatWest branches to offer assistance. “

Vale and Barry Buttrills ward councillor Ian Johnson said: “This is a deeply disappointing decision by RBS to close their Holton Road branch, especially having been bailed out by the public during the banking crisis. They are right to say that there are other banking options locally but having more vacant shopping units in the heart of Barry town centre would reflect poorly on the town.

“Plaid Cymru have been asking the Vale council to take a more proactive stance on attracting new retail businesses and investment to Holton Road.

“This is an opportunity for them to show their commitment to Barry.”