Queues build as Swindon Post Offices run out of money

·2-min read
Post offices run out of money for council tax rebate payments (Photo: Dave Cox)
Post offices run out of money for council tax rebate payments (Photo: Dave Cox)

Post Offices in Swindon have been running out of money to pay people their council tax rebates.

Several residents in Swindon have experienced delays getting their rebate paid back to them in cash while queues have also reported to be extensive.

There are two reasons for this; the post offices won't pay into Nationwide accounts, and, the post offices not having enough cash available in-store to pay the £150 to their customers.

One woman, 56-year-old Claire Woods, said she was sent to four different post offices around Swindon before she found one that could process her request for her money.

"It's just been a waste of my time and money," Claire said.

Read also: The reason you may not have received your £150 council tax rebate

The reason Post Offices won't pay the £150 into accounts held by Nationwide is it is not recognised as a bank, but as a building society.

Because of this, the Post Offices are having to pay more people in cash than they first expected.

A spokesperson from the Post Office explained they have an agreement with the UK’s banks and building societies that enable customers to deposit cash at their post office branches.

However, Nationwide are the only major bank or building society that doesn’t currently offer that option to its customers.

This has led to more people than expected taking out their £150 council tax rebate, making post offices run out of cash to pay these fees.

A Post Office spokesperson said: "We’re investigating whether certain branches in the Swindon area have experienced delays in receiving cash in order to process the government’s £150 rebate for residents via our Payout service. Nationally, our 11,500 branches have processed over 720,000 cash payments exceeding well over £100 million.

"We have an arrangement with 30 UK banks and building society brands which enables their customers to deposit and withdraw cash, deposit cheques and make balance enquiries at any of our 11,500 branches.

"With regards to Nationwide, their customers can withdraw cash at a Post Office however it’s not possible for their customers to deposit cash at our branches which is a decision taken by Nationwide."

The Council Tax rebate has been paid to over 50,000 households in Swindon so far, but there are still some eligible households who have not yet received their payments.

But the council have reassured the Swindon residents still expecting the £150 government payment that they will receive the sum in the form of vouchers issued by the Post Office.

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