WHILST I agree with the points made by M.D. Clipton (Craven Herald letters, December 14) upon the closing of banks across Craven, the question arises as to why our political representatives have not treated the matter with the concern it requires and why we lack vociferous leadership.

After the recent Barnoldswick closure it was announced that a 'hub' was being considered. We then heard that 'hubs' will be to give advice, not do any actual transactions. It simply isn't good enough for people in business.

Banking is no longer fit for many purposes and business people now stand in long queues at post offices, with cash in one envelope and cheques in another, in order to pay into accounts.

It is difficult to believe the Government's protestation that it is committed to retaining 'cash', when the chancellor could easily stem (and reverse this increasing slide) with indication that bank specific taxes will be instigated if the industry doesn't tow the line. Our political representatives show the same enlightenment in this matter as they have done with home heating.

For example, they happily talk of banning wood fuel usage for home heating, whilst totally ignoring the fact that huge areas of Craven have never had a gas supply. Presumably they don't remember that rural tax payers helped establish the natural gas system, but have had no benefit from it.

Worse is to come. As thoughtless people impose a cashless society by default, it will eventually result in a loss of democracy. Banks, or worse Governments, will undoubtedly use IT to direct our card transactions.

Accounts will be closed without appeal, business of the wrong persuasion will be proscribed from card transactions, and the public will no longer have any say in events, having lost alternatives to money. The recent debacle of Nigel Farage being 'picked upon' by an undemocratic bank is a wonderful pointer towards our future. Absolute power corrupts and we are pointed on the way towards it.

John Pallister

Bolton by Bowland