Shopkeepers in plea for fee cut to save cash dispensers
Cash machines are disappearing (pic: Link)
Britain’s shopkeepers are calling for a halt to the closure of thousands of cash dispensers.
They want LINK, which manages the UK’s cash machine network, to cancel a planned cut in fees paid to operators.
The Association of Convenience Stores (ACS) says the cuts have resulted in thousands of free cash machines being lost in communities across the UK, leaving tens of thousands of people with no free means of accessing their money.
ACS says the cuts have gone too far, too fast, and according to consumer group Which?, have led to one in 10 of Britain’s cash machines being either lost or moved to a pay-to-use model which denies people free access to their cash.
For millions of people, their local shop is now the only place where access to cash is available, especially as more than a third of bank branches have been retreating from high streets, towns and villages in the last five years.
ACD chief executive James Lowman said: “Protecting access to cash is crucial for the millions of people that still rely on it every day.
“Communities across the UK have been left without a cash machine at all as a result of LINK’s programme of cuts to interchange fees, with many more only being able to get to a machine locally that charges to withdraw money.
“LINK must stop the cuts that have been so damaging to the network and ensure that the local shops who offer cash machines are supported.”
ACS has said that if LINK does not take action, the Government should intervene to ensure that access to cash is protected in the long term.