TIMES readers have slammed the "dreadful" announcement that Cowdenbeath's Bank of Scotland branch is to close.

The organisation confirmed that the High Street facility ranch will shut its doors on June 24 next year with the provision of a banking hub planned for the area to allow customers to continue to carry out their everyday banking.

The bank says the announcement follows an assessment of how customers are managing their money and using the branch.

"Most customers are now using our Mobile Banking app, Internet Banking or calling us instead," they stated.

READ MORE: Bank of Scotland announces plans to close Cowdenbeath branch

The news has not been welcomed by many Times readers who took to our Facebook page to voice their discontent at the plans.

Aspadistra Pronkovic described the decision as "dreadful" while Maggie McPhillips commented: "That’s terrible, we’ve already lost the bank in our own village meaning we have to travel to Cowdenbeath. It’s just not right when people are already struggling to get there, what the hell does a hub do?!."

Angus M Eaglesham added: "Absolute disgrace. (It) covers Kelty, Hill of Beath, Lochgelly... Always busy. All theses areas growing all the time."

Brandon Moir said: "This is because they don’t want cash anymore. They want to move to digital currency so they can control your money and how much you can spend… cash is king."

Customer June Thorburn said: "Shocking this bank has the best staff."

Stewart Colquhoun agreed, saying: "Best staff ever. It will be a sad loss."

Local councillor Darren Watt took to his Facebook page to express his disappointment at the news.

"This is not only the last remaining bank in Cowdenbeath, but the last in the local area following other bank closures in Kelty and Lochgelly in recent years," he said.

"Despite an ever increasing cashless culture, in-person banking still remains a very important part of life for many people, particularly those most vulnerable in our society, and I sincerely hope proper support, guidance, and advice will be offered to those most affected.

"Their own evidence demonstrates this with over 50 per cent of in branch customers aged 55+.

"With the closure date scheduled for June 24, 2025, I would urge every customer to seriously consider their options between now and then, whether that means changing banks, exploring Post Office services, or familiarising themselves with online banking, telephone banking or using the mobile banking app.

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"However, it should be noted, branches on Dunfermline's East Port and on Kirkcaldy High Street will remain open."

Posting on his social media, councillor Bailey-Lee Robb, also said: "I’m deeply alarmed at the planned closure of the Cowdenbeath branch. With no other local bank in the town, or in the surrounding area, this will leave customers and businesses with no option but to travel further afield for local banking services.

"To that end, I will be writing to the Chief Executive as a matter of urgency to seek clarity around their decision.”

With no more branches in the town – the closest ones will be in Dunfermline or Kirkcaldy – Bank of Scotland say a banking hub will be brought into operation.

"Banking Hubs are shared banking spaces on the high street operated by the Post Office," a statement explained. "They are open Monday to Friday.

"Customers of all major banks and building societies can use them to do their everyday banking tasks.

"Our Community Banker will be at the Banking Hub one day a week, so you can come in and do your banking in person. We'll update our website with the hub address, opening times and when our Community Banker will be there, when this information becomes available."

Figures released by the Bank of Scotland have revealed that the Cowdenbeath branch currently has 857 regular personal account customers.

From these, two per cent are under 18, 16 per cent are aged 18-34, 30 per cent are 35 to 54, 35 per cent are 55 to 74 and 17 per cent are over 75.

A total of 94 per cent of people using the branch are personal customers with the remaining six per cent business customers.

In 2024, there were 48 per cent less personal customer transactions at the branch compared to in 2019 while business customer transactions fell by 38 per cent in the same period.