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Article and photographs by Paul Wright
More Bank Closures

customers closed
Former "Lloyds" customers.
Lloyds bank, (former TSB), old Nat West on right.

We can all recall the days of our High street being the go to place for most things in life?

But that time has moved on, and so have several key players that have made up the fabric of the town.

During the sunny part of 2021, we lost Peacock’s, Argos, and Barclays Bank.

Old Nat West.
And within a year, NatWest's Rushden branch, a bank since the days of Queen Victoria, closed its doors to customers on March 22nd, 2022.

The Northamptonshire Union Bank Limited, was acquired by the National Provincial and Union Bank of England limited. And in 1924 the Bank was re-titled National Provincial Bank Limited.

This was to remain until the start of 1970 when it merged with the Westminster Bank Limited under the new title of National Westminster Bank Limited.

The Rushden branch had celebrated its 125th anniversary in 2013, and was sadly one of the 24 branches in England that will have closed. No sentiment was shown regarding loyalty by staff and customers in that direction.

Talking of direction’s, NatWest customers will have to go to the NatWest in Wellingborough, Kettering or Bedford, if they want to deal with a person in branch.

Meanwhile at the other end of the High Street, TSB customers will have to travel to nearby Bedford or Weston Favell if they want an over the counter service; this was to be the state of play from April, 2022.

Old TSB, (formerly Lloyds)
and left the former "Thomas's hairdressers".

Lloyds Bank, with the former “Thomas’s hairdressers” to the left, where the salon was upstairs, and the newsagents and stationers were on the ground floor.

Many of us will recall the days of Mr Allen Goulsbra running “Lloyds bank” until taking his retirement in 1978. He was a chairman of Rushden U.D.C (Urban District Council), and a former chairman of “R.A.T.S.” (Rushden Amateur Theatrical Society). He became the last manager to have lived in the flat above the bank.

Customers are reminded that they can pay in and take out money from their bank account at any of the 11,500 Post Office locations across the UK.

The Trustee Savings Bank or TSB was was merged with Lloyds Bank in 1995, resulting in the formation of Lloyds TSB in 1999.

I remember along with many others opening a savings account at the branch when it was in the High street.

This was at number 70 High Street, which was next door to what is currently the RSPCA charity shop.The new branch was opened during the late 1950’s by Earl John Spencer, the father of Princess Diana, and father of the current 9th Earl Spencer, who is called Charles.

Prior to that they were over the road at number 111 High Street, that is now in 2021 “Housewives' choice”. For several years TSB was part of “Lloyds TSB”.

Rushden was left with Lloyds Bank until the end of June, 2022, and HSBC and the Nationwide Building Society, all for now in the High Street.

More than 64,000 staff at Lloyds Bank were to receive a £1,000 one-off payment to help with the rising cost of living in the UK.

The payment - due to be made in August, 2022 - came after a campaign by the Unite Union, which demonstrated at Lloyds' annual general meeting.

This figure was not helped by the frightening price of filling up a vehicle, in June, 2022, that made your eyes sting, at over £100 to fill up.

This situation was made worse by the war in Ukraine inflicted by the invasion by Russia, under orders of President Vladimir Putin.

When the Rushden “Lloyds” branch closed, there were to be no staff losses. [reopened as a Mediterranean Restaurant]

We are reminded that we can get cash out of a machine, yes we can, but what about coinage? Several take away food outlets locally prefer cash payments!

Still open, HSBC.
Still with us, Nationwide (former Anglia branch).

In Higham, the local stationery firm “Coleman’s” had decided to close, that was in the Summer of 2022.

In September, inflation was running at 10.1%, the price at the pumps was slightly lower, with the RAC (Royal Automobile Club) suggesting that it should be at least 9 pence per litre less. Locally there does seem to be a post code lottery, in the price we pay at the pumps. But the prices did start to drop.

The new Prime Minister, 47 year old Liz Truss was announced on Monday 5th September, 2022 at 1.35 pm, to replace Boris Johnson.

She became the third female prime minister, following Margaret Thatcher and Theresa May.

In a poll of Tory party members, the foreign secretary defeated rival Rishi Sunak with 57% of the votes to his 43%, a slimmer margin than expected, in a contest that ran for about 8 weeks.

The usual meeting with the Queen, to be formally invited to form a government was held up at Balmoral, due to mobility issues with Queen Elizabeth, who was 96 yrs of age.

Sadly Her Majesty passed away in the afternoon of Thursday 8th September, 2022. Liz Truss has the accolade of serving under two monarchs, as Prince Charles became King Charles III.

All 29 billion coins in circulation in the UK have the Queen's head on them. The most recent of those design’s was from 2015.

Out of respect, many sporting fixtures were cancelled in the UK.

Update :

Well, that did not last very long.

Liz Truss announced her resignation from the lectern outside No 10 on Thursday 20th October, after just 44 days in the job. This was also the shortest period that any UK Prime minister had stayed in office.

Rishi Sunak will be the UK's next prime minister after winning the Conservative Party leadership contest. He will become the UK's first British Asian PM and at 42, the youngest in more than a century. The ex-chancellor who oversaw the nation's finances during the Covid pandemic was the only contender to gain enough support from MPs.

Former Prime minister Mr Boris Johnson was thought to be making a comeback in the race at one stage.
Other rival Penny Mordaunt dropped out of the race in the final minutes before nominations closed on Monday, 24th October, 2022.

Rishi Sunak has become the new UK prime minister after meeting King Charles at Buckingham Palace on Tuesday 25th October, 2022.

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