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Abolition of Cheques

Volume 531: debated on Wednesday 13 July 2011

I should like to present a petition on behalf of my constituent Dr Helen Gilthorpe, declaring that the petitioners

are profoundly concerned by the proposed abolition of cheques.

It is accompanied by another petition in similar terms signed by some 60 of my constituents, many resident at the Abbeyfield care home in my constituency.

I know that the arguments for the retention of cheques are well understood by the House. The cheque is still the second largest means of payment by value in this country, and cheques are a convenient way of paying bills and making donations to charity. Some 46% of cheque use is by those aged 55 and over, and the campaign to keep the cheque is supported by groups ranging from Age UK to the Federation of Small Businesses. I understand that the Payments Council has announced the suspension of its proposal to abolish cheques, and I hope that it will take this petition as further support for that decision.

Following is the full text of the petition:

[The Petition of Dr H. Gilthorpe and others,

Declares that the Petitioners are profoundly concerned by the abolition of cheques.

The Petitioners therefore request that the House of Commons urges the Government to encourage the Payments Council to reverse the decision to abolish cheques and maintain them as a method of payment for the foreseeable future.

And the Petitioners remain, etc.]