Link, the UK’s biggest network of free-to-use cash machines have announced that they are set to close or introduce fees to 45% of their cash machines as a result of changing banking trends.
Mid-Scotland and Fife MSP, Murdo Fraser, has warned that this decision will hit rural Scotland hard and wants Link to think again before axing 30,000 free-to-use cash machines.
Some rural communities in Perth and Kinross, like Methven, have only two cash machines both of whom charge for withdrawals and Murdo believes that this situation could become more commonplace across the country.
Cash machines out with the Link network traditionally charge between £1.50 and £2 for each withdrawal.
Commenting Murdo Fraser MSP said;
“With Bank branches exiting the high street at an alarming rate there has never been a greater need for free-to-use cash machines.
“Many rural residents in Perth and Kinross are set to be robbed of their local bank branch and now face the prospect of having to pay to withdraw cash from standalone machines.
“There is no denying that banking is changing but bank bosses need to realise that a lot of people rely on traditional means to bank and access cash.
“These proposals will be the first major test of the Payment Systems Regulator and I hope that they are able to step in and ensure customers don’t lose out.
“The convenient availability of free-to-use cash machines has helped rural businesses and I would encourage Link to seriously reconsider these cuts to parts of Perth and Kinross.”