Nigel Farage has described a document he claims showed Coutts closed his bank account because it did not agree with his political views as “prejudiced and nasty”.
The former UKIP and Brexit Party leader said he was shocked by the “vitriol” within the document as he called for a change in legislation to ensure the right of an individual to open a bank account.
Mr Farage said he had a 40-page document showing he met the “criteria for commercial retention” but the exclusive bank Coutts – used by the Royal Family – wanted him to leave because of his views which range from his position on LGBT+ rights, through to his friendship with former US president Donald Trump.
He told Sky News: “It’s such a prejudiced, nasty document. It’s the metropolitan elite loathing the views of the many millions of us that live outside the M25.
“I was shocked with the vitriol that was within it.
“My case is one clearly of discrimination. They do not like my opinions. All of my views are legal. All of my views actually are majority views in the country.
“It is wrong that banks can just close people down and not give any reasons why that is, I think that is going to change.”
Sky News has not seen the document in question.
Mr Farage claimed 10 banks have refused to open an account in his name, saying he may “effectively become a non-person” without a method of banking.
“You can’t exist. You can’t live. Luckily, there are some 21st century technical fintech operations out there through which I will be able to receive income and pay money out [but] it’s not a bank account,” he said.
“I can’t earn interest on the money. I can’t borrow money. I can’t have an overdraft limit. I can’t take out a mortgage. I haven’t quite yet worked out whether I can do direct debits to the electricity supplier.
“I can get by [but] it’s not the same as a bank account. It is a deeply personal issue.
“To announce to the world that a bank has foreclosed on you is quite an embarrassing thing to do and without doubt will affect my credit worthiness for years to come.”
Mr Farage called for “regulatory change”.
“I believe it should be a right in this country for any individual to have a bank account, to open a business account. I’m actually quite optimistic with this debate that it can happen.”
Sky News has learned that further secondary legislation due to be unveiled soon will require banks to give customers three months’ notice of account closures and to provide a full explanation.
Mr Farage spoke about the level of support he has received after going public with his financial situation, after Conservative MPs raised his case in the House of Commons during Prime Minister’s Questions.
“Never before in my public life have I received such support from across the political spectrum.
“I’m normally what’s considered to be a polarising figure, but on this people can see was the difference between what’s right and what’s wrong.”
He added: “Don’t forget I’ve been fighting against the Conservative Party for many, many years – Grant Shapps and I [are] not exactly political friends. He’s spoken out on it.
“Several Labour have now spoken out and this is a non-partisan issue. This is not about politics.”
Earlier, a Coutts spokesperson said decisions to close accounts “are not taken lightly and take into account a number of factors including commercial viability, reputational considerations, and legal and regulatory requirements”.