I NOTE frequent letters about the removal of the cash option in local car parks, but fear this is going to be the norm everywhere, and not just in car parks.

I started an online petition to Parliament in January, have plugged it on several sites, and it has only achieved a rather pathetic 80 signatures to date.

It would need another 9,920 signatures by July to get any kind of response.

Unfortunately a majority of people I speak to are more than happy to pay by phone, and don't seem to recognise that there are many who will be left behind.

It's a bit unfortunate that an issue that is most likely to have the maximum impact on those who aren't wedded to the internet, and might not even own a smartphone, has to be the subject of an online petition, but that's the option that was available.

Yet another example of people being disenfranchised and left behind.

There is a wider issue here, and that's the fact that cash is being rapidly phased out, and the alternatives put all transactions in the hands of phone companies and app makers, or credit card companies.

We need to protect cash, or introduce a cash friendly alternative – like cards that can be topped up in your local corner shop, transport hubs, council offices etc.

There are well proven alternatives. We have Oyster cards in and around London, and other examples worldwide, some don't even have a set up cost.

If done thoughtfully you could even introduce a localised discount scheme for local taxpayers (one for BCP Council?), though they would need to be based around a standard UK wide top up card.

Because a petition to Parliament can't be specific to a local issue, the title of the petition is less than punchy.

You can find "Require Cash Options For Day To Day Expenses…" on line via https://petition.parliament.uk/petitions/237233

Perhaps those who do have access to the internet can think of the left behind, elderly relatives, those who can't access credit, or simply support freedom of choice, and help get the outstanding signatures needed to get this looked at properly.

You have until July 21 to sign and share it.

I hope more people will.


Fraser Road, Poole