Don Foster MP*


Don today revealed new figures showing that local post offices will lose up to 7246 customers, as many pensioners are likely in future to collect their entitlement at banks and building societies.

Main ImageThe Government’s Payment Modernisation Programme involves writing to all pension and benefit claimants who do not have their money paid directly into a bank or building society account. The ‘invitation’ offers three payment options 1) Direct into a normal bank or building society account 2) Direct into a new basic bank account, and 3) Directly into a Post Office Card Account.

“Pensioners are NOT being given the option of retaining their pension books, said Don Foster. “Those who wish to opt for the Post Office Card Account have to go through a long, complex and off-putting bureaucratic process.”

“At present over 40% of Bath’s pensioners collect their pensions from Post Offices, using their Pension Books. With this option ending and with the new Post Office Card account option being so complex, I fear most of them will choose one of the other, non-Post office options.”

“The exodus will mean post offices are robbed of vital income since they receive a fee for processing each benefit payment.”

Many pensioners have reported being talked into signing up for new bank accounts and internal Government documents reveal that staff are under pressure to push to customers into taking this ‘cheap’ option.

Don said:

“Millions of pensioners chose to have a pension book. The Government is now telling them to think again. Heavy handed tactics will create a mass exodus of pensioners out of the post office and into the high street banks.

“The plans will rob the post office network of vital revenue and will accelerate the rate of closures. Many of the pensioners who want to stick with the post office could be met with a permanent ‘closed’ sign.

“The Government’s plans are driven by cost-cutting and not what is best for pensioners. Many pensioners are comfortable with what they know. They have no desire to change. It is not too late for the Government to think again and allow pensioners to hang onto their pension books.”


This article published: 09/12/2023

Published by Bath Liberal Democrats, 31 James St West, Bath, BA1 2BT. Printed and hosted by JPC Infonet, 2 St Georges Works, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 8AA. Your Privacy._blank


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