Plan unveiled for free cashpointsA hundred of them to go in post offices

23 October 2006

Three hundred free-to-use cash machines are to be installed in some of Britain’s poorest communities.

Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS), which owns NatWest, said it will install and maintain the cash machines for free.

It confirmed that 100 of the 300 ATMs will go in post offices.

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.'

Cash machine charges

Earlier this year a taskforce was set up to look into cash-machine charges and how they affect UK consumers; Which? is on the group.

The taskforce is looking at the impact of fees and the quality of signs used to warn customers that they face a charge to withdraw money.

The number of cash machines charging fees has risen sharply in recent years to around 40 per cent of the entire UK network, with typical fees around £1.50 for each withdrawal.

Which? has long called for cash machines to be labelled with clear symbols so you can see upfront whether you'll be charged.

As well as making sure that charges are clear and fully transparent, Which? has also voiced concerns about the lack of free cash machines in many local communities around the UK.