BARCLAYS has announced it is closing two of its branches in Monmouthshire.

The banking giant will shut its sites in Monmouth on February 9 and Chepstow on February 11.

Letters have been sent out to inform customers of the news.

The nearest Barclays branch for people in Chepstow will now be in Newport or Westbury-on-Trym, while the next nearest for Monmouth will be Abergavenny or Hereford.

A spokesman for the bank said: “The decision to close a branch is never an easy one.

“However, customers are increasingly using alternatives to branches to do their banking.

“As a result, we are seeing a sustained fall in branch visits across the UK.

“This ongoing change in behaviour means we are seeing a sustained fall in customer transactions across our network.”

Transactions at the branches in Chepstow and Monmouth are down 17 and 16 per cent respectively, while the bank says 87 and 82 per cent of customers there are using alternative ways to do banking such as by telephone, online and mobile app.

The bank said it does not intend to make any redundancies as a result of the closures, and that staff will be offered alternative roles.

It said customers will still be able to use the Barclays app as well as telephone, online and video banking.

Everyday transactions can also be carried out at the Post Office, with the closest located in Welsh Street, Chepstow and Monnow Street, Monmouth.

Chepstow councillor Armand Watts said the branch in Beaufort Square had been there since he was a child.

“It will be a great loss to the town centre and to the financial amenities on the High Street, especially for older people who may not be familiar with online banking it will be a significant loss,” he said.

Monmouth councillor Richard Roden also expressed disappointment over the news.

“It’s a very sad loss to the town,” he said.