A petition to save a popular Sunderland bank from closure has reached over 400 signatures in just over three weeks.

The campaign to save the Lloyds Bank branch on Sea Road, Fulwell, has received the backing of hundreds of concerned residents.

Lloyds Group and NatWest Group announced plans last month to close the branch on 20th July 2023 due to its plan to axe more than 80 branches across the UK.

However, scores of residents have expressed concerns that the closure of the bank will leave many residents unable to access a physical branch, particularly the vulnerable.

The campaign has been led by local resident Andy Stafford, who is urging residents to back the campaign if they want to have their voices heard and save the local amenity from closure.

He said: “If Lloyds Bank is to carry out its promise and close the Sea Road branch then it would have a devastating impact on the lives of hundreds of residents.

“Many people in Fulwell still rely on the bank to manage their finances, especially the vulnerable and those who aren’t used to using apps and computers.

“Not only that, but it is also one of the bedrocks of our local high street, with visitors often going on to visit local stores and cafes. If the bank closes it’ll be a massive loss to the Fulwell community.

“That’s why we’re calling on residents to join us and stand up for our community. Already we’ve had over 400 signatures and the more people that get behind it, the more chance we have of saving this vital local asset.”

The campaign has also been supported by Richard Beck, chair of the Fulwell and Sea Road Traders Association and a long-standing volunteer at Fulwell Community Library.

He said: “Several members of Fulwell and Sea Road Traders Association bank at Lloyds, the last remaining bank in Sunderland North.

“It will be a blow to all of us if the bank closes. I have written to Lloyds asking them to reconsider the closure or run a reduced service from Fulwell Community Library and am awaiting an answer.”

The digital petition can be signed here: https://www.change.org/p/stop-the-closure-of-lloyds-bank-in-fulwell