“… Figures show one in ten cash machines – or ATMS – have disappeared from East Devon’s high streets in the last two years, amid warnings the UK’s cash system is ‘falling apart’.
At the end of 2017, there were around 230 ATMs – according to data from the cash machine network Link – this has now fallen to 208, as of February this year.
The number of free-to-use cash points has also gone down from 179 in 2017 to 171 two years later.
An independent review published in March found that around eight million adults – 17 per cent of the population – were still reliant on cash and would struggle to cope in an entirely digital economy.
These included people in rural communities, those on a low income who may struggle to budget without cash, and older people or people with disabilities who rely on cash for their independence.
Natalie Ceeney, chair of the Access to Cash Review, said: “There are worrying signs that our cash system is falling apart.
“ATM and bank branch closures are just the tip of the iceberg – underneath there is a huge infrastructure which is becoming increasingly unviable as cash use declines.
“We need to guarantee people’s right to access cash, and ensure that they can still spend it.”
A recent report by consumer watchdog Which? found almost 1,700 previously-free cash machines had begun charging users between January and March of this year. …”