HUNDREDS of branches of Natwest and Royal Bank of Scotland, including centres in Chipping Sodbury and Winterbourne, are to close, it has been announced.

Natwest, which is part of the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) group, will see 197 of its branches closed while 62 RBS facilities will also be shut at the cost of 680 jobs.

Natwest also has branches in Thornbury and Yate, but these will not be affected.

A spokesman for RBS said that the move was in response to more of its customers using online services. 

“More and more of our customers are choosing to do their everyday banking online or on mobile," they said.

"Since 2014 the number of customers using our branches across the UK has fallen by 40 per cent and mobile transactions have increased by 73 per cent over the same period.

"Over 5 million customers now use our mobile banking app and one in five only bank with us digitally."

They added: "We expect these branch closures to result in around 680 redundancies.

"We realise this is difficult news for our colleagues and we are doing everything we can to support those affected.

"We will ensure compulsory redundancies are kept to an absolute minimum”.