Banking Hubs: Rural Areas

Treasury written question – answered at on 15 May 2024.

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Photo of Mark Menzies Mark Menzies Independent, Fylde

To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of banking hubs in helping to ensure access to banking facilities in rural communities.

Photo of Bim Afolami Bim Afolami The Economic Secretary to the Treasury

It is important that all customers, wherever they live, should have appropriate access to banking and cash services and the government monitors this situation closely.

Following recent discussions with the UK high street banks, UK Finance confirmed 225 Hubs will be announced by the end of 2024. Participating high street banks have also committed to improving Hubs by standardising the services available between firms, ensuring that customers do not require their own digital device to bank, trialling both a ‘customer liaison service’ and Saturday openings. The banks have agreed to keep services under review to ensure their effectiveness for all customers.

Banking Hubs are recommended by LINK and delivered by Cash Access UK, according to criteria set by industry. The Government does not intervene in these decisions. If a Hub is not available, rural communities can bank via the Post Office, which allows personal and business customers to carry out everyday banking services at 11,500 branches across the UK. The Post Office is also required to ensure that 95% of the total rural population across the UK is within 3 miles of their nearest Post Office.

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