Ryedale's MP has welcomed the news that Helmsley will not be left without banking facilities following the announcement that Barclays is to close its branch in the town next month.

Barclays has said that its bank in Helmsley will close on February 25 after figures showed four fifths (81 per cent) of customers at the branch are using different ways to bank.

However Kevin Hollinrake MP said the town had faced a reduction in services over recent years and while banking services will be available through the post office, but there were often lengthy queues there and the other major issue here was clearly the lack of an ATM and lack of guarantee that provisions will be in place before the closure in February.

He said: "As residents will know, I have previously made clear Helmsley cannot be left without banking provisions before the bank closes its doors next month.

"Barclays is the last external free to use ATM in the town and I have made clear that residents cannot be left without this service, even if this means maintaining the current ATM in the meantime.

"I'm pleased to inform constituents that a Barclays cash machine will remain in the town in the regular branch location until a new is location found."

Mr Hollinrake said: "Barclays staff will be available in Helmsley library within the town hall two days a week.

"Customers will be able to receive advice and if needed, Barclays staff will accompany customers to the post office to assist with any banking requirements. Moreover, businesses who are using cash will be able to bank this at the post office, as well as depositing cheques.

Mr Hollinrake said: "I share constituents' disappointment that the branch is closing, but I am pleased Barclays have responded to the needs of Helmsley residents and reacted accordingly. If constituents have any concerns or questions, please do not hesitate to contact my office."

Karen Swainston, Barclays Head of Corporate Relations for Yorkshire said: “The decision to close a branch is never an easy one, however, customers are increasingly using alternatives to branches to do their banking.

“We will still have an active presence in the Helmsley community and using the local library is a great way for us keep in touch with our customers and provide any services and advice they may need.”