The closure of a high street bank branch could present opportunities for the post office to flourish, council cabinet member for business, Pamela Fleming has said.

The Hampton Hill branch of Barclays Bank closes today due to declining customer usage, after Barclays released statistics showing the average customer used mobile banking 24 times a month, but visited a branch fewer than two times a month.

It said 75 per cent of the Hampton Hill branch’s customers would also regularly use alternative branches.

Customers are encouraged to use the post office at 58 High Street for their banking needs, but some fear that the loss of the bank’s presence on the high street will have a detrimental effect on the area’s shops and cafes.

Isolde O’Kane, town centre manager, said: “The issue from the traders’ point of view is that people who use the bank often shop nearby.

“Now they will go elsewhere, to Teddington perhaps, and shops in Hampton Hill will potentially lose business.”

Chairman of the Hampton Hill Association, Derek Papworth, said people seemed to understand why the branch was closing, but it would be good to have a building society in the area.

He said: “There was less of a reaction from residents than I would have anticipated, but I think that’s because it already seemed like a done deal when we heard.

“We’re lucky to have a post office when so many have closed down, and hopefully people will use it so we can maintain trade.”

Councillors have a meeting with the Post Office scheduled for October 14 to discuss how the Hampton Hill branch, which closes for an hour at lunch most days, can best serve its customers, given recent branch closures of high street banks.

Coun Fleming said: “We are meeting to discuss both Hampton Hill and quite generally the opportunities for the organisation to provide other services.”

Other high street banks such as Metro Bank, which has a large branch in Kingston, about using the unit, but Coun Fleming says opportunities at the post office will be explored first.

She said: “We might well want to try that, though I suspect they will feel Hampton Hill won’t be big enough for them.

“First of all we will see what can happen at the post office.”