Sheffield postmaster ‘feels powerless’ over removal of vital cash machine

A Sheffield postmaster will lose significant income and is fearing closure after a cash machine was removed from his post office.

Monday, 12th July 2021, 2:00 pm

The ATM, which was outside Banner Cross Post Office on Ecclesall Road, was taken away on Monday morning, and it will have a massive financial impact.

Nasar Raoof, 35, Banner Cross’ postmaster, said: “It’s an absolute killer. When you take something away like this, it leaves you with tuppence. I feel powerless, I don’t feel valued, and inevitably it takes money and food out of my children’s’ mouths. The impact of this will be felt for years to come.

“The removal was forced upon us by the Bank of Ireland, who run the machines. I’ve had all these arguments with the Post Office over the last six months, but not one of them listened.”

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Nasar Raoof, 35, Banner Cross postmaster
Nasar Raoof, 35, Banner Cross postmaster

Mr Raoof said cash deposits and withdrawals will still be available over the counter, but the lack of a machine will lose him ‘five-to-seven hundred pounds per month at least’.

He said: “It’s a massive kick in the teeth. There’s now a fear of digging into personal savings to compensate and push cash into the business. I never thought I’d be in that position.”

Locals have been directly impacted by the closure of the ATM, particularly the most vulnerable who have struggled throughout the pandemic.

Where they could previously avoid going inside, touching door handles, and encountering people, they will now have to enter the premises to receive their cash.

Nasar Raoof, 35, Banner Cross’ postmaster.

Olivia Smith, 70, a retired bookshop assistant, said: “I’m really disappointed because it was convenient, and I used it regularly.

“Some of the smaller shops don’t like taking card payments for small amounts, because the banks charge them too much.”

Bruce Sachs, a university lecturer, said: “The post office has always been a great service to the community, but a bit less so now.

“It’s yet another inconvenience for shoppers at Banner Cross. The council imposed new parking charges here not so long ago, but other suburban parking areas such as Crookes remain free. It’s simply not fair.”

Banner Cross is one of hundreds of post offices across the country which have had ATMs removed, as in October last year it was announced a third would shut by March 2022.