Local Liberal Democrat politicians are opposing plans by Lloyds to close their Fore Street branch, leaving Wellington without a high street bank.

Parliamentary candidate Gideon Amos and Town Cllr Ross Henley released a joint statement asking the banking giant to 'think again.'

Mr Henley said: "Some people, particularly vulnerable people need access to cash. I want to see what equality diversity and impact assessment Lloyds bank have done. We need to keep this last bank in Wellington open."

Mr Amos added: “I’ve taken up the challenge to get Lloyds to think again about closure - Wellington needs to still have a bank but as the country’s last to issue its own bank notes this building is also a piece of our country’s history.

"I’m working with dedicated Wellington town councillors like Ross Henley and Mark Lithgow on this, we’re writing to the chief executive of Lloyds asking them to use the building not only as a bank but also to provide the post office our town centre desperately needs.

“Our great independent shops in Wellington have shown how it’s done, if they can do business on the high street so can Lloyds.

“The black horse is trying to bolt, Ross and I are doing everything we can to stop it galloping out of town. Lloyds should be banking on Wellington.”

Confirming the closure on Wednesday, a spokesperson for Lloyds said: "Visits to our Wellington, Somerset, branch have fallen over recent years, as many customers now choose to bank digitally. 

“When the branch closes, customers can use the local Post Office for everyday banking which is less than a mile away, access cash at the nearby free-to-use ATMs, alongside other ways to bank such as over the phone and online, or the new Banking Hub once it is up and running.”

Residents and businesspeople reacted with dismay to news of the planned bank closure. Ben Fox, a fifth generation descendent of bank founder Thomas Fox said: “It’s inevitable that that’s the way modern banking is going, I use very little cash myself and the business banking is done through a mobile phone, it doesn’t need a huge branch anymore. 

“But I also get the fact that for a small town like Wellington it’s really sad and a problem for a lot of people who still use a high street bank and might now have to go to Taunton.

“Although it’s a sad day for banking, I’m surprised it hasn’t happened sooner. The banking ombudsman should have seen this coming and told the banks they can’t just walk away from these towns that they have done really well out of.”

In a Facebook group for Wellington residents, Elena Veysey said: “Soon there will be nothing left in Welly for those who can’t drive or are less mobile. Very sad.” 

Helen Murray said: “How can a town the size of Wellington not have a bank or a Post Office? This makes no sense.” 

Catherine Acreman said: “There’ll be nothing left soon, apart from hairdressers, cafes and charity shops.”

The service is set to be replaced by a 'banking hub' which will be operated by Post Office staff. A premises for the hub is being sought.