Millions of Brits face being cut off from system as cash 'phased out in five years'

Campaigners say those at risk of being left behind as a cashless society looms include the elderly and vulnerable.

John Howells, chief executive at the UK’s cashpoint network Link, said the use of notes and coins is down 40 per cent since Covid and “still falling” as people switch to plastic.

Cash machines and bank branches are vanishing from high streets, while more shops, restaurants, bars and venues only accept card payments.

Mr Howells warned that around five million people are at risk of being left behind unless more is done to help the transition to digital.