Invention : ATM ( Automated Teller Machine)
Biography | Inventions
John Shephard-Barron was the inventor of the
ATM cash automatic machine
born in India in 1925 to Scottish parents. He worked for the
banknote printer De La Rue and even was acknowledged by Queen
Elizabeth back in 2005 for his contributions to banking. It is cash
machine that has made an international celebrity. When
Sheppard-Baron first started producing his cash machine, it wasn’t
long after when companies all over the world picked up on his idea.
Sheppard-Baron always said that he looked at the machine as a
novelty at first but now days it is part of everyday life.
John Shepherd-Barron changed the world with his
money invention. Each time you walk up to an ATM to withdrawal money, it was
already planted in his vision some 43 years ago. The idea first hit him when he
arrived at his bank after hours, because the only thing stopping him from
getting his money was business hours.
He started thinking about how to obtain funds
when after banking hours. Then, like magic, he came up with the idea when he was
in the bath. "It struck me, there must be a way I could get my own money,
anywhere in the world or the UK," he said during an interview in 2007.
"I hit upon the idea of a chocolate bar
dispenser, but replacing chocolate with cash." He took his invention to Barclays
and raised awareness that they could charge a fee for people to take money from
the Automatic Teller Machine. The ideal sold, and the bank installed it at their
London location in 1967.
bank was the first bank to use the then cash machine. The
machine was installed on the 27th June 1967 at north London
suburb. The machine received the special check and after
verification, dispensed the ten-pound bills on another tray.
Forty years after his
invention, he was awarded an Officer of the Order of the
British Empire OBE for his invention. The teller machine has
grown to every part of the world and currently there are
about 1.7 million ATMs installed around the world.
He died peacefully at a
hospital in Scotland at the age of 84. His wife, 3 children
and 6 grandchildren survive him.
By: Kara Gilmour
BBC Article about John Shepherd-Barron in
The Scot credited with inventing the automated
cash machine has been awarded an OBE - 40 years on.
John Shepherd-Barron, 79, from Tain in Ross-shire, said the accolade was "better
late than never".
He came up with the idea of the auto-teller in the early 1960s after becoming
frustrated at not being able to access his own money at weekends.
He installed the world's first ATM at a branch of Barclays Bank in Enfield,
North London, in 1967.
At the time he was managing director of De La Rue Instruments.
The De La Rue Automatic Cash System took in cheques impregnated with Carbon 14,
which were bought in advance from a bank teller, and exchanged them for cash.
Each cheque was chemically coded to identify between customers so money could be
taken from the correct bank account.
Mr Shepherd-Barron went on to supervise the installation of the machines in
Switzerland, Philadelphia and Japan.
There are now an estimated 800,000 cash machines across the world, and De La Rue
still produces about one in every five. Mr Shepherd-Barron becomes an OBE for
services to banking.
He said: "It was a bit late, but better late then never.
"It is very nice to have it, but it has taken about 40 years."
He said that despite some complaints from the US, the Guinness Book of
Inventions had recognised him as the inventor of the ATM.
"The thing that I have done obviously became an important feature of
international banking," he added.
"It has everyone in the world working in the same way."