An Angus town is to be left with no physical bank after the Bank of Scotland announced it will close its Kirriemuir branch next year.
The provost of Angus has slammed the bank’s decision, describing the move as “another nail in the coffin” for the town.
The Kirriemuir branch is one of eight throughout Scotland, including the flagship Marketgait branch in Dundee, which will close between February and June 2019.
Councillor Ronnie Proctor warned the closure of the Kirriemuir branch on May 30 would sound the “death knell” for small businesses and urged the bank to reconsider its decision.
He said: “I am really saddened and disappointed a town with a population of around 6,500 to 7,000 will be left without a bank.
“The bank takes people’s money but does not provide a service.
“This will not only deprive residents of a service, but it will also affect shop-keepers who are struggling at the moment.
“People who are going to the bank to do their business nip in for a coffee or go to the shops – this is terrible.”
Mr Proctor, Conservative member for Kirriemuir and Dean, warned the town would become a “postcode” of Forfar and said it would not only affect those living in the town but those in the outlying areas.
He continued: “When the Royal Bank of Scotland closed I suggested the banks could pull together and have one premises where they all had a counter to provide a service for the people of Kirriemuir and the surrounding area.
“Now, the nearest bank for those living up Glen Isla will probably be Blairgowrie, and those living up the glens of Clova and Prosen will have to travel to Forfar.
“Those having to travel from Kirrie by bus to Forfar face a half hour trip each way.
“This is very bad news, I am really against this closure.”
Angus MP Kirstene Hair is also seeking urgent talks with Bank of Scotland bosses in response to the news the Kirriemuir branch will close next year.
Scottish Conservative MP Ms Hair is urging the bank to reconsider the move.
She said: “I was very concerned to hear the Kirriemuir branch of Bank of Scotland is to close.
“This is just the latest in a long line of similar decisions that are decimating our town centres.
“I have written to the management of Bank of Scotland calling for a meeting to discuss the proposals at the earliest opportunity.
“I hope Bank of Scotland will reconsider. Local residents will be appalled at the thought of the last branch in town shutting its doors.
“In the meantime, I will also be urging the bank to ensure the public are fully consulted on the plans and on any proposals for mobile banking.”
A Bank of Scotland spokesperson said: “We have made the difficult decision to close the Bank of Scotland Kirriemuir branch due to the changing ways customers choose to bank with us, which has resulted in the branch being used less often.
“We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause, customers can continue to access their banking locally by visiting the nearby Post Office which is less than half a mile from the branch.
“The nearest alternative branch is Forfar.”