Cash machines give unexpected windfall

PUBLISHED: 13:56 02 January 2008 | UPDATED: 13:07 04 May 2010

Christmas shoppers were able to double their money

Christmas shoppers were able to double their money

By CATHERINE ATKINSON CASH point machines in Ely and Soham provided Christmas shoppers with an unexpected windfall. At the BP garage on Witchford Road, the Nationwide cashpoint machine was giving double money all day on December 22. When a 27-year-old El

By CATHERINE ATKINSON

CASH point machines in Ely and Soham provided Christmas shoppers with an unexpected windfall.

At the BP garage on Witchford Road, the Nationwide cashpoint machine was giving double money all day on December 22.

When a 27-year-old Ely man, who wishes to remain anonymous, went down to the service station to get breakfast at 11.30am, his friend told him the machine was giving out double the money requested.

By 3pm word had spread and the queue had grown so much that it was taking 45 minutes to get cash out.

"Some people had up to six cards, and were withdrawing the maximum on each one," said the man. "I can't believe the cash didn't run out sooner."

"We didn't feel guilty because the company will be insured for something like this. I think someone had just put 20s in the 10s slot or something but I've heard of machines giving out less than you request, so it must happen the other way round, and people lose out."

Sarah Stevens, marketing manager for the James Graven Retail, who run both the service station on Witchford Road and Budgens in Soham, said: "I was aware of the problem on Christmas Eve. Budgens in Soham had been giving double cash on the Saturday due to a loading error, but as soon as staff became aware of the problem it was switched off. Obviously we don't feel the financial impact of withdrawals as the cash machine is managed by a third party."

A spokesperson for the Nationwide said: "A fault was reported with the ATM machine in Ely on December 22. As soon as we knew there was a problem the ATM was temporarily withdrawn from service. We will not be actively seeking a refund from anyone who was affected."

The Nationwide was unable to confirm how much money had been paid out in error.

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