Speaking in a debate on financial exclusion and the future of access to cash, Peter Aldous calls on the Government to ensure 24/7 access to cash in market towns.
The hon. Gentleman makes a very good point. His constituency is similar to mine. Does he agree that 24/7 access to cash is important in market towns? Certainly I note a postcode lottery developing in my area.
That is absolutely correct. I compliment the hon. Gentleman on his very good point.
There is a nasty parallel, as other Members have said, between the closure of ATMs and the closure of bank branches. In just a short time—can you believe this, Sir Henry?—we will have only one bank branch in the whole huge county of Sutherland, which is 2,028 square miles. Imagine what that means for my constituents. There are, however, already examples of banks working together to form one-stop shops in southern conurbations in England. I call on the Government and the Scottish banks to do something similar for rural areas such as mine in Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross.
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