The UK Payments Council has reversed its
decision to axe cheques by 2018.

The chairman of the Payments Council, Richard
North, said that the U-turn followed the Council’s appearance
before the Treasury Select Committee (TSC) and consultation with
banks and stakeholder groups.

He said:

“It’s in the DNA of the Payments Council to
consult and listen to all those people who actually make payments
and use cheques. [We] have concluded we should reassure customers
that the cheque is staying.”

North added: “We will use what we’ve learnt to keep improving
existing systems, as well as introducing innovation, so that
customers benefit from 21st century ways to pay.  Innovation
must be at the heart of what we do.”


Criticism from Treasury Select

In April, TSC chairman Andrew Tyrie, had critised the Payment
Council’s plans, saying:

“The Payments Council had seemingly forgotten about the millions
of people who remain less at ease with the latest technology. Since
our last inquiry we have been inundated by letters from the public
telling us that they rely on cheques.

“Many charities, small business and vulnerable
people – including pensioners – depend on cheques. Their needs
must be considered. They should not be forced into shredding their
cheque book