PLANS to close Silsden's NatWest Bank branch this autumn have sparked an angry reaction from local people.

The bank has announced that the Kirkgate premises will close on November 18, blaming falling levels of demand.

A NatWest spokesman said: "The number of transactions taking place in this branch has fallen by 23 per cent over the last few years. It is only open for 18 hours and only 30 customers use it on a weekly basis."

People opposing the closure say the loss of this branch will have a serious impact on people who rely on it.

Stuart Rowland, partner at neighbouring firm Walker Foster solicitors, said: "It'll be a major inconvenience for us and for many other businesses and individuals in the town.

"It's the only bank left in Silsden, and we have a huge balance with them.

"It will be a big blow to us if we no longer have access to a local bank where we can pay in funds and have our other banking requirements dealt with."

Craven Ward councillor Adrian Naylor said: "I'm very concerned about what's going to happen.

"I know that by November NatWest are hoping to have an arrangement where their customers can pay in and take money out of the local post office. But this won't be handling more complex transactions."