A community has won its wish for a new free-to-use ATM.
Several residents at Dover’s Buckland estate had asked for one and it is now at the One Stop Stores branch in Sheridan Road.
A previous free to use machine was removed several years ago.
It then meant residents who wanted access to banknotes would need to walk 10 minutes to Crabble Post Office in Buckland Avenue for cash withdrawals over the counter.
However, the journey there and back meant walking along the steep hill of Green Lane for older residents.
LINK, the ATM (automated teller machine) network helped install this one, having already funded five others in Kent including in Ashford, Deal and Margate over the past 18 months.
More than 55 communities across the UK have benefited to date from this initiative.
The Buckland residents got what they wanted through LINK’s Community Request Scheme, which invites any individual or local group to ask for an ATM.
If it meets the criteria which includes distance to nearest free ATM, availability of a Post Office, site security and that there is a suitable location, LINK will fund the new ATM directly.
LINK explains that cash remains vital for local communities despite a sharp fall in ATM use across Kent since the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Withdrawals in the county were down 42% from April 2020 to this March compared with the same period the year before, equating to over 600 million fewer withdrawals.
Ian Vernon, head of commercial initiatives, said: “We know more people are comfortable using contactless cards or their mobile phones to pay for everyday items these days.
” However, digital payments don’t work for everyone and it’s only by visiting sites like Buckland Valley that you understand why we need to protect cash access.
“We encourage people to get in contact with us because it’s only from listening to communities directly that we have a better understanding to how we can support.”
Read more: All the latest news from Dover