Written evidence submitted by Philip Matthew
I am delighted that you are to enquire into
the proposed abolition of cheques. There are many instances in
which a written "instruction to pay" is required, and
I do not believe that satisfactory non-written alternatives will
be available in the foreseeable future. My suspicion is that the
banks would like to come up with something "new", let
us call it a "bank payment instruction", they would
tell us all what a great innovation it is and, by the way, the
fee is, say, £5.00 per transaction.
My use of cheques is by no means unusual, and
1. Sending birthday and Christmas presents, around
£200 each, to my great-nephew and great-niece, who live
300 miles away.
2. Paying traders for work done at the housegardeners,
plumbers, electricians etc.
3. As treasurer of a Probus club (a club for
mainly-retired business and professional people) receiving payment
for our monthly lunches from those attending on each occasion.
I use internet banking regularly, I am not a
technophobe, but none of internet banking, plastic cards or cash
would be appropriate to these circumstances, or to many other
circumstances which thousands of other bank customers encounter
Cheques are a necessary public service which
the banks must not be allowed to take from us.