Jenni Allen, Managing Director, Which? Money, said:
“The stark findings in this report back up our own research, which has shown that bank branch and ATM closures could be contributing to a risk that millions of people are cut off from access to cash – with the most vulnerable members of society hit hardest.
“It is vital that everyone has the option to use cash for as long as they need to – and continuing the unplanned drift towards a cashless society is not an option if we are to protect almost half the population for whom cash is a necessity.
“The Government should urgently give a financial regulator or the Bank of England a duty to protect access to cash and examine the issues driving change in the payments sector, to ensure no-one is left behind as digital payments grow in popularity.”
Notes to editors
Which? research found almost 3,000 bank and building society branches have closed or are due to close in just over four years – an alarming 60 a month. https://www.which.co.uk/news/
2018/09/exclusive-up-to-3000- bank-branches-close-in-just- four-years/
Figures released by LINK reveal a 1,300 decline in the number of free-to-use cashpoints between the end of January and the start of July. This is the equivalent of 250 a month.
Which? research also revealed over three-quarters of consumers in the two lowest household income groups rely on cash the most. https://press.which.co.uk/
whichpressreleases/poorest- threatened-by-move-to- cashless-society-study-from- which-reveals/