Bank of Ireland has neither confirmed nor denied reports that it's preparing to shut branches across its network.

In a statement, the bank said its operations were subject to ongoing review and that it would provide an update on all aspects of its business when it publishes annual results on March 1st.

A number of media outlets have reported that the bank is reviewing its branch network specifically, raising fears that it could be set to close a number of branches across the country.

Bank of Ireland has over 260 branches here, the largest bank branch network in Ireland.

The bank temporarily shut around 100 branches at the onset of the pandemic last year.

It's since reopened more than 80 on a part time basis.

The Financial Services Union has said it's engaged with the bank on a timetable for the full reopening of the branches.

It said it was not aware of any plans by Bank of Ireland to permanently shut branches.

Bank of Ireland announced a redundancy package last summer which will see the equivalent of 1,450 full time positions, or about 14% of its workforce, leaving the bank.

The bank received more than 2,000 applications for the scheme.

The speculation around Bank of Ireland's branch network comes as Ulster Bank is expected to announce its future intentions for the Irish market in the days ahead.

Its parent, NatWest, has been engaged in a strategic review of its operations in the Republic of Ireland.

Ulster Bank is scheduled to publish its full year results on Friday.