Barclays finally announces opening date for Great Yarmouth branch

Still boarded up the new Barclays Bank branch on the Market Place in Great Yarmouth.Picture: James B

Still boarded up the new Barclays Bank branch on the Market Place in Great Yarmouth.Picture: James Bass - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2014

Barclays' move into Great Yarmouth town centre looks set to be complete before the year is out.

More than a year after the bank won a planning appeal to move its branch into Market Place, it has confirmed the new store will open its doors to customers on November 10.

Boards branded with the Barclays logo have surrounded the empty unit, formerly the M&Co clothing shop, at 40-42 Market Place since the start of the year.

When it finally opens, Barclays will close both its Hall Quay and its Trafalgar Road branches.

Irene East, spokesman for the bank, said: 'Our colleagues at Barclays Hall Quay and Trafalgar Road have been consulted about the change and will be given the opportunity to work at our new branch or an alternative branch nearby.

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'The new branch will have our latest technology, a modern open-plan layout, improved meeting areas, a cash machine that is available 24 hours a day and full disability access – making everyday banking simpler, quicker and better.

'Customers have been informed of the change. They will not need to take any action as all account details, sort code, account number, and direct debits will remain the same.'

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The arrival of Barclays in Market Place will mark another shift in the changing face of Yarmouth's town centre.

Lloyds bank moved into King Street, a stone's throw from the Barclays site, in April.

Both banks have had to fight to relocate; Lloyds won its appeal to move to the former Burtons Evans store last May. Initially, some traders voiced fear the relocation of two banks into the shopping centre would 'totally overbalance' the town and damage the vitality of the Market Place.

While the application was turned down by Great Yarmouth Borough Council (GYBC), the refusal was later overturned giving Lloyds the green light to go ahead with its £750,000 move. A month later, Barclays was granted permission to go ahead with its £1.2m move.

At the time Jonathan Newman, Great Yarmouth's town centre manager, said traders had to 'get beyond the disappointment that we are losing another large retail unit from the town centre', while others said the addition of banks could increase footfall.

No-one from Lloyds was available to comment on what is happening to the now empty former Lloyds TSB unit at Hall Quay, and the former Lloyds bank in Market Place, before the Mercury went to press.

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