Cheques Explained

UK is unusual amongst European countries in that we still use a lot of cheques.  There was a plan to phase them out by the end of October 2018, but it’s been shelved – too many people use them and rely on them, chiefly the elderly, charities and small businesses.

Cheques Explained - The Importance 1 - Debt Consolidation LoansCheque usage has declined sharply over the years since the peak in 1990, when some four billion cheques were written – 11 million cheques each and every day.  Various efforts were made to spice up their appearance, with illustrations, and in 1995 Lloyds Bank introduced left-handed cheque books for their more ‘sinister’ customers.

The first major retailer to stop accepting cheques was Shell in 2005, and by 2008 most major retailers had followed suit; Harrods was the last, holding out until 1st July 2011.

Some predict that cheques, along with the 1p coin, will be gone by 2023.  If so, they will have had a good innings – more than 360 years since the earliest known surviving English cheque was written, dated 16th February 1659.

In theory, a cheque can be written on anything portable – a pig, for example.

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