Now Virgin Money scraps passbook savings accounts


Virgin Money has become the latest bank to scrap popular passbook savings accounts as banks continue to shut branches.

The owner of the Clydesdale and Yorkshire Bank brands is set to tell around 100,000 account holders that they will no longer be able to use their passbooks to pay in or withdraw cash in person.

They will be encouraged to shift their savings online or to use a cash machine card instead.

A sign of the times: Virgin Money is set to tell around 100,000 account holders that they will no longer be able to use their passbooks to pay in or withdraw cash in person

A sign of the times: Virgin Money is set to tell around 100,000 account holders that they will no longer be able to use their passbooks to pay in or withdraw cash in person

It follows a similar move by Lloyds, Britain’s largest lender, which The Mail on Sunday recently revealed was withdrawing more than 3 million passbooks.

Lloyds’ decision raised concerns that older and more vulnerable customers who do not use or trust online banking, and rely on going into a branch, would struggle to access their money.

Passbooks are particularly liked by the elderly who are reassured that the book gives them hard evidence of how much they have in their accounts.

Lloyds’ move also revived fears fewer customers are likely to visit branches, giving banks an excuse to close even more of them.

Banks and building societies have shut 5,818 branches since 2015, at a rate of around 54 each month, according to consumer campaign group Which?

Virgin Money, which has 2 million savings accounts, recently axed another 39 outlets, while Lloyds Banking Group – which also owns Halifax and Bank of Scotland – has earmarked another 123 for shuttering this year. 

The use of passbooks has dwindled as customers move online. Santander no longer accepts them and Barclays binned them when it bought Woolwich. Nationwide no longer offers passbook accounts to new customers.

A Virgin Money spokesman confirmed it was ‘in the process of removing’ passbooks.

‘As there are now more secure and convenient ways for customers to manage their money, including offline and in-store options, passbook accounts have not been available to open for a number of years,’ the spokesman added.



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