THE high street bank TSB has confirmed six North-East branches will close as part of a major restructuring next year.

The Spanish-owned bank is closing two branches in County Durham and three in North Yorkshire as part of 164 branch closures across the UK.

It is understood the move will see 900 jobs lost across the group from cuts that have been driven by a "significant shift in customer behaviour".

It blamed the closures on the fact that fewer people are using branches and are instead favouring online banking.

Here are the branches that are closing:

- Durham High Street - May 12, 2021

- Hebburn, St John Precinct - February 18, 2021

- Horden, Blackhills Road - February 23, 2021

- Malton, Wheelgate - June 24, 2021

- Richmond, Frenchgate - March 16, 2021

- Whitby, Flowergate - June 2, 2021

What TSB have said

Debbie Crosbie, chief executive of TSB, said: “Closing any of our branches is never an easy decision, but our customers are banking differently – with a marked shift to digital banking.

“We are reshaping our business to transform the customer experience and set us up for the future.

“This means having the right balance between branches on the high street and our digital platforms, enabling us to offer the very best experience for our personal and business customers across the UK.

“We remain committed to our branch network and will retain one of the largest in the UK.”

The firm said the cuts are being made across its branch network, as well as in its mortgages and customer service operations teams.

Robin Bulloch, customer banking director at TSB, said: “Alongside these changes, we will continue to invest in our remaining branch network to offer high quality banking services, fully integrated with improved digital capability.

“We are working to ensure the transition towards digital – which is being seen right across the economy – is handled sensitively and pragmatically for our colleagues and customers.

“We’re taking steps to support vulnerable customers and those in rural locations.”

Dominic Hook, Unite national officer, said: “Unite has urged the bank to rethink these plans and protect these much-needed jobs during the current health pandemic.

“Not only do these staff deserve more from their employer after showing the utmost loyalty to TSB, customers will be deeply hit by these branch closures.

“Unite has argued for some time that the financial services industry has a social responsibility not to walk away from its local customers, who continue to need access to banking in bank branches."