ATM help for poor

The National Federation of SubPostmasters along with the Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and NatWest are to install up to 300 machines to allow free access to savings.

Gordon Pell, chief executive of retail markets at RBS, said: “Lack of free access to cash can badly affect the most vulnerable people in society.

“Having a free-to-use cash machine close by can make a real difference to the elderly, disabled and those living on a very low income.”

The announcement comes after a Citizens Advice study in July found that free ATM “deserts” exist in many parts of the UK, while research published by Nationwide in August claimed that Cornwall and the Scilly Isles are suffering the most from the problem, with 60 per cent of ATMs in Cornwall charging a fee for the service.

This means that many people, often the poorest, are getting deeper in debt just to access their own money.

However, the move to install more cashpoints could help people struggling to clear debt to do so.

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