Debanking: fighting back
BASC has written to Nikhil Rathi, chief executive of the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), to provide evidence of sector-wide discrimination by many high-street banks against over a third of shooting-related businesses.
Greg Smith MP, vice-chair of the All-Party Parliamentary Group on Fair Business Banking, said: “The Farage case of political debanking has only just blown the tip off the iceberg and it is now quite clear that there is widespread debanking going on for perfectly legal activities.”
Payment service SumUp puts on its website hunt clubs, distributors of guns, firearms and airsoft guns, munitions sales, escort services and fortune-tellers in the same bracket of undesirable customers. Almost two thirds of BASC respondents reported difficulties in opening a bank account.
Dr Conor O’Gorman, BASC’s head of policy and campaigns, said: “Discriminatory banking practices against businesses connected with shooting and other countryside pursuits is rife. We want the FCA’s debanking review to use the evidence we have submitted and put an end to this.
“Some banks are cancelling the countryside by denying the rural community fair access to banking services. You wouldn’t expect your electricity, gas or water to be shut down because of your interest in shooting.”
This story first appeared in Shooting Times, Britain’s oldest and best-selling shooting magazine. Published every Wednesday, the 141-year title has long been at the coalface of the countryside, breaking the stories that matter to you. Subscribe here.