New free-to-use cash machines are to be installed in York, it has been announced.
LINK, the UK’s main ATM cash machine network has picked York for a free cash machine pilot in response to the rapid and unprecedented decline in cash usage by UK consumers.
In late August, LINK announced that for the first time it will be directly commissioning a new ATM in five communities with poor access to cash.
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Today, this is being extended to six more sites including York, which lack access to either a free to use ATM or cash through the Post Office counter.
This is the first part of funding being made available to protect free access to cash for every high street in the UK.
If a high street is threatened with the loss of its last free-to-use ATM, LINK has committed tol step in to ensure that an ATM is made available and paid for with funding from all the UK’s main banks and building societies if there is no nearby Post Office counter to serve that community.
Read more: How cash is becoming threatened by lack of use
In March, the independent Access to Cash Review said the UK is not ready to go cashless and set out a series of measures necessary to ensure no one is left behind as the UK moves towards an increasingly cashless society.
LINK’s announcement today will ensure that, as the UK continues to evolve from a high-cash economy to one where most payments are made digitally, ATMs – which remain a vital part of the UK’s cash infrastructure – are protected.
In addition to York, funding is being made available in Deal and Margate; Middleton, Greater Manchester, Wilmslow, Cheshire, and Ebbw Vale Blaenau Gwent.
LINK CEO John Howells said: “LINK is determined to defend free access to cash across the UK in the face of very rapidly declining cash use. Today’s action will protect consumers whilst much needed industry reforms to move to a more sustainable utility infrastructure take place.”