IRVINE will be one of the first areas of Scotland to become cashless, a study has found.

Research by online Online trading platform CMC Markets produced the findings using House of Commons data relating to the number of ATM closures across the UK.

They then compared this with population figures to find the number of ATMs per 10,000 people across different parliamentary constituencies in Scotland and the rest of the UK.

The data found that Aberdeen South has seen the biggest switch to a cashless approach in Scotland, with a 36 per cent reduction in ATMs in the region between 2018 and 2022.

Also in the upper reaches of the list was Central Ayrshire - which covers the parliamentary region of Irvine, Prestwick and Troon.

This is as, since July of 2018, there has been a loss of 21 ATMs across the area.

This gives a 20 per cent reduction across the four years covered by the findings - above the national average of 18.3 per cent.

Elsewhere in Ayrshire, Ayr, Carrick and Cumnock (18.5 per cent) has seen a shift above the national average, though Kilmarnock and Loudon (15 per cent) and North Ayrshire (11.3 per cent) remains below the Scottish trend.

But what does this really mean?

Well since the Covid pandemic began, and health and safety fears arose regarding the handling of cash, many businesses and institutions have looked to speed up our switch to becoming a more cashless society.

Physical cash has become far harder to access over the past five years - with multiple bank closures and a reduction in the number of cash machines that can be found across the region.

This data shows that while Scotland is becoming more 'cashless' in general - Irvine may be one of the first areas of the nation to see a complete switch.