/ Money

Mark Carney: Let’s decide the future of money

Does cash hold a place in the future of money or are digital transactions now king? Our guest author Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, wants to know your thoughts.

Money is evolving. So is the way we pay for things, the financial services we use and how we keep the financial system safe.

Bank notes are in the process of moving from paper to polymer, and for many people payment by plastic card is the norm these days.

We’ve seen the rise of contactless payments and even the emergence of crypto-currencies. These changes have implications for consumers. They also matter a lot to us here at the Bank of England.

We print bank notes, we process payments, and we keep your money secure by ensuring that banks and the financial system as a whole are resilient.

Changing payments

Understanding how people use their money and how they feel about changing trends in money and digitisation in financial services more broadly is really important to us.

That’s why we set up Future Forum: the Bank’s first virtual event where we’re asking consumers to talk to us about anything concerning the future of money.

We want to hear what you think about cash, contactless payments, the service you get from banks and building societies, and much else besides.

Perhaps you’ve signed up to the Which? ‘Save Our Cashpoints’ campaign and want to tell the Bank why access to cash through these facilities is so important to you.

Or you might have signed the Which? Action on Scams campaign because you have concerns about the risks associated with bank transfers and new forms of cybercrime. You can share your experiences with others on the Future Forum.

Cash question

Future Forum isn’t about navigating to the end of the road for cash. Bank notes will remain an important form of payment for many years to come.

But new forms of payment are becoming ever more common. And, as we look to the future, we want to know what this could mean for you, whether you’re young or old or whether you live in a city or a rural area.

Our Future Forum will be here until January 2019 and some of those people who are most active on the platform will be invited to a roundtable event with our Governors.

Many of us will be taking part in live Q&A sessions on the platform over the coming weeks, so please register now so that you can take part in these conversations.

This is a guest post by Mark Carney. All views expressed are Mark’s own and not necessarily those also shared by Which?.

What do you think about the future of money? Do you think there’s still a place for cash – or do you pay for everything on plastic?

liz grant says:
15 February 2019

I have an online only bank account so I need to access ATMs to get ready cash. I

Iain Moffatt says:
15 February 2019

Doubtless, like many others, I am concerned that those outside those people who have access to the ‘digital world’ are likely to be unable to carry out the very things that banks were set up (way back in the dim and distant past when people counted) to facilitate. Bills must be paid on time, no excuses allowed.
Food must be bought .. fares must be paid etc etc.
I am fortunate, I can access and I can cope at least for now.
But what if you are a ‘non-person’. No fixed abode, rely upon the state for your very existence. Now what !!!
Heaven help us all ….

Iain, I believe most benefits must now be paid into bank accounts, see:


That article also mention the use of i-movo for excepted cases:


A few years ago, a lot of benefits were paid by cheque or giro, but that wasn’t very secure because those payments were easily stolen or misappropriated by others.

My somewhat limited experience tells me that many homeless people have severe problems with alcohol or drug addiction. Whilst it might be temping to think that getting rid of cash would shut down trading in street drugs, I bet things wouldn’t be so easy in practice.

David says:
15 February 2019

I go into my bank to obtain cash by presenting my cheque, made out to ‘Cash’
I do not present a bank card, know or use a pin number.
I have been using the bank for 25 years – if a new teller does not recognise me then they have to find a member of staff that does.

David – it’s great to hear that you still have a bank giving you that service.

In the suburbs where I live, only a few bank branches now remain. All the banks still have branches in the city centre, but those are crammed with many “robots” (self service machines) and only have a few humans to provide “old-fashioned” counter services.

Kim Pierce says:
15 February 2019

Loosing are right to use cashwould be yet another great loss for mankind, Crazy

With the number of types of fraud via credit/ debit cards the only safe alternative soon will be to pay by cash. Same with paying bills by cheque, another method they are trying to eradicate. Give me cash and cheque for the future in banking.

If cash is taken away from us it will mean total control by the authorities. They will be able to limit or exclude access to all our funds and be able to see exactly what we spend our money on. They will be able to sell our information to advertising agencies who will undoubtedly bombard us with texts, phone calls and emails. All our financial privacy will be accessible, so we will not be able to lend or borrow money from friends or family without the authorities knowing all about it.

HMJones says:
15 February 2019

This is a rural area and not only bank branches but post Offices (a good alternative when close ) so that i find myself some ten miles in one direction and seven in another from a source of cash over the counter yet most of my daily transactions are cash. It certainly needs more co-ordination as some of these areas have not yet had the internet connections.
Please keep this communication problem to the front for attention..

Last December in 2018 I transferred a substantial amount of cash to buy a house and later changed my mind and solicitor put the cash back into my account again.

It transpired that the fraud team established these transactions were genuine after realising that the transaction had been carried out by Lloyds them selves using CHAPS and unblocked my account the same day. They made one attempt to call me as is normal practice but were unable to speak with me. Therefore your card remained blocked without my knowledge until I attempted to use this at a petrol station and it was declined. This caused embarrassment and and could have left me high and dry had I not got cash to pay for my fuel a whole month later in January 2019, which was the next time I came to use my card.

Lloyds explained that their fraud team only make one attempt to call customers in these circumstances due to the higher number of customers they interact with. And if they can’t contact a customer, the block remains on the card to prompt the customer to call (assuming I had a phone or could have resolved it there ant then) or visit branch once a transaction has been declined when ever that may be. No letter is sent and is not normal practice to do so apparently as they can’t cope with the demand it seems. I now carry two cards from separate banks as back up and cash. If we can’t have cash then at least let the card work for say £30 would make too much sense.

I also carry two different cards as a contingency measure.

Pamela Gibbons says:
15 February 2019

I frequently use cash. Living in a rural area where broadband is poor and banks and ATMs are non-existant cash is essential.

Services like buses and taxis, fish & chip 🍟 shops, market traders and Car parking, Especially at Hospitals” which I think should go back to having an attendant””should get COUNCIL Help to get them set up for taking card payments as it seems it will eventually be forced into the change?!
My own business relys on Cheques as well as cash payments but I know at some stage I will have to get set up for card payments.

Ian MacAulay says:
15 February 2019

Too many people losing there jobs on the front line in banks, the tellers, those who we love to chat to as we do our business. I don’t want to have s virtual chat with an anonymous machine. Keep the friendly teller who can give us some advice as well as some cash.

Alison says:
15 February 2019

I am getting fed up of machines taking over people’s jobs. Banks closing, wanting us all to internet bank, self service check outs and wanting everyone to have smart metres but to mention a few

Not only am I fed up of bank closing and people losing jobs, its also a way of big brother, the government keeping a track on us. Nor can we pay cleaners hairdressers, window cleaners etc in cash. It also effects tips etc. This has to stop NOW

I am an ex serviceman and just had my leg amputated, I found to go to the nearest shop to draw money out of the cash machine but unfortunately it never has any money, I have complained many times

Annony Mouse says:
15 February 2019

Not everyone wants to use internet banking !! We earn our money we should have the choice how to spend it.. Cash is valuable to

Joanna Hurley-Brown says:
15 February 2019

What happens when the lights go out? No computers, no on-line banking. No money!! I do not trust on-line banking as there appear to be security loop holes. I much prefer to go to a bank and interact with a human being – no robots and no call centres on distant shores. Not everyone has a smart phone or a computer with their life on it. I certainly do not wish to be reliant on technology for my everyday affairs with many companies and perhaps the government knowing what I do day by day. We need banks with people behind counters, we need cash machines, we need coins and we need bank notes. If there is no ready money what on earth will the Bank of England keep in its vaults? Perhaps the building will become another coffee shop or a hotel!!!

Peter Gamble says:
15 February 2019

With more banks closing and less cash points, the rot needs to stop now! If the computers go down at banks, as they have been, you need cash.

I am so sick to death of the way the populace of the UK are treated, we are being treated like small children. Told what we can eat ,less sugar in everything, less food on our plates, yet we are allowed to get drug, take drugs and now if we are older being told we should be stopped from driving because we are older. What is this country coming to? Our currency is of such poor quality that bounces out of your pocket! Well why is a Canadian the head of the mint office and why is he interfering in our politics.? He should go back to Canada and mess with their currency and bring back to the populace our own notes and silver and stop issuing the rubbish that is being minted now and stop all this nonsense about Brexit not being good. we have enough countries in the Commonwealth to trade with for foods and medicines. Even now Australian meat is coming into the UK through Wales so what is all this hassle about trading with the EU? We do not need them. We were banking long before the EU stole billions from us, what is to stop us from having banks in the UK after we leave the most expensive club on earth… the EU. So let us put all this nonsense behind us, change our parliamentarians and get rid of the house of Lords The useless layabouts who earn vast amounts of money. Their wages alone would keep this country in funds.Maybe we should have a peoples parliament and be able to remove them if they do not do their job correctly within 5 years. Our laws are definitely in need of re writing.Birching for thieves, loss of driving license for anyone caught driving drunk or drugged up and stiffer for young drivers who are too impatient to show curtesy on the roads. More crashes and deaths on our highways are caused by 17-40 year olds than ever are caused by older drivers.

June Wilson says:
16 February 2019

its another form of control, the government will know every penny that we have , could stop our money electronically anytime, total dictatorship !!!!! … when we do not do their bidding , very worrying …

Gaynor says:
16 February 2019

What happened to Inclusion, Diversity and Equality it’s being pushed to everyone to make sure everyone is included…….. But making a cashless society is complete EXCLUSION for lots of people, the minority still have to be considered and allowed access to using cash. If Technology malfunctions, which it frequently does, we have no alternatives to access money and why should the banks/government decide how we obtain or spend our money. It’s all about control and monitoring people’s financial movements.