There are fears Northallerton is being swamped by eating establishments and bars as permission is sought for Barclays Bank, which is due to close, to be used as a café or restaurant.

There have already been concerns over the closure of another bank in the town, which will have only two banks and three building societies after Barclays closes on March 14.

Branches of Barclays closed in Bedale in April last year and in Leyburn in May. Neither town now has a bank. Barclays has opened “local” sites in the towns which can offer services but not cash, and do not have ATMs. Thirsk branch of Barclays closed in October, a “local” site has opened there.

Councillor Paul Atkin told Northallerton Town Council there are currently 47 places along the High Street from the library in the south to Sam Turners in the north which are eating establishments, and he was concerned it was too many.

He said: “There are 47 places where you can get anything from a sandwich to a six course meal. I just think, is there a limit to what we can cope with? It is a bit like charity shops, should we be saying enough is enough, we don’t want anymore?

Darlington and Stockton Times: Barclays Bank in Northallerton is due to close in March

“I don’t know where people are coming from for all these eating establishments.”

Regarding Barclays, deputy mayor, Cllr Paul Cornfoot said: “My understanding is they don’t have anybody lined up as a restaurant or a café, I don’t think there is anyway we can object to it.”

Cllr Mike Holmes said it was a way for the owners of the building to ensure they have flexibility going forward depending on what establishment may want to take it over.

Permission is being sought for a certificate of lawfulness for the change of use of Barclays Bank to restaurant / coffee shop on behalf of the trustees of the Carolgate Friendly Society, based in Mayfair, London, who are understood to be the owners.

The planning application has been made to North Yorkshire Council and is awaiting a decision. Documents say the A3 use permitted shall not be open except between 8am and 12am, Monday to Saturday, and between 8am and 10pm on Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Barclays say they will be there for customers, just in a different way.

A spokesperson said: “In Northallerton we plan to open a Barclays Local, a cashless banking site where customers can meet a colleague face to face for banking support as they would in a branch and without the need to travel. We are currently working with the local community to identify suitable locations and will announced details once confirmed.”