Freezing in Newcastle? You're not alone: For one lonesome creature, the world stopped on 31 Dec 2020

The Natwest ATM of woe says no, bleats a plaintive: Børk!


Bork!Bork!Bork! A chill wind from the North greets today's entry in The Register's pantheon of Bork. A hidden (and frozen) cashpoint awaits visitors to Newcastle station.

While London's Kings Cross may have a secret platform (handily marked by a luggage trolley sticking out of the wall and a shop filled with overpriced Potter tat), Newcastle Central features a super-secret cashpoint, nestled on platform 2, between the back of Boots and an achingly hip coffee shop.

Four Natwest cashpoints are available on the main concourse, but a fifth lurks around the corner for those caught short in the readies department prior to boarding.

"I don't think anyone would notice it back there," remarked the reader who snapped the distressed dispenser, "I certainly haven't and I've been going through the station twice a day for years."

bork B Newcastle

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Be that as it may, the ATM has sadly failed to avoid the attention of the Gods of Bork. Unless that message is an indication of just how cold it gets in Newcastle and the ATM has found itself with nothing but the stereotypical T-shirt to ward off the shivers.

"System Freeze" could mean all manner of things. Perhaps this is the final version of the ATM's software. Or, more likely, something has befallen the hardware and Natwest's finest has reacted with gibberish that would make even the biggest fan of Microsoft's BSODdery look on in envy.

The list of codes is interesting. USB features prominently, although not always in uppercase. We'd guess the machine is showing some sort of device list, but will leave it to wiser heads in the forums to speculate what the last letter might mean.

bork B Newcastle

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Sadly, it appears the cash-flinging fun came to a grinding halt on 31 December and three weeks on (this snap was taken this week), things still seem to be at a standstill. A metaphor, perhaps, for Brexit Britain. Or for the fact that we all had such high hopes for 2021 but, for Blighty at least, the new year has just been a continuation of the old one.

Newcastle, and its borked banking outlets, has much to teach us all.

Credit must go to Register reader Dan and "the free folk of the north" for this one. And yes, that does sound a bit like a 1970s pop combo. ®


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