Local Banking event update

This event, held on 10th July 2015 at the Guildhall in Plymouth brought together 35 people representing socially entrepreneurial organisations in Plymouth, Devon and Cornwall to gain expertise, share ideas and plan next steps for local stakeholder banking.

table discussionWith that in mind, we invited Alex Templeton from the Community Bank of Hampshire, to tell us how social entrepreneurs can set about starting up a new local bank; Fiona Brownsell, a banking systems expert and Director of Tusmor consultants, to explain how emerging technology in payments systems can enable community banks to take on the big players and Mark Burton of the Bristol Pound, Bristol Credit Union and Plough and Share Credit Union, to highlight the potential for credit unions to become a more powerful force in local economic development. Tony Greenham set the scene by talking about different ways in which communities are rising to the challenge of building financial infrastructure that properly serves the needs of the local economy.

Presentations

Why local banks are needed, and why it’s up to us

Tony Greenham, outgoing Head of Finance & Business, New Economics Foundation

Creating a new bank from scratch – what’s involved?

Alex Templeton, formerly of Hampshire Community Bank

Technology as an enabler of community banking

Fiona Brownsell, Tusmor Ltd

Can credit unions become the new force in local banking?

Mark Burton, Plough & Share Credit Union

Local Bank event Spark Award report

This event was jointly hosted by Plymouth Social Enterprise Network, Transition Cornwall Network and The Devon Forum for Local Economies in association with the New Economics Foundation. The event was financially supported by an UnLtd Santander Spark award and a small grant from the South West RSA.

2 Responses to Local Banking event update

  1. Pat Bushell July 30, 2015 at 9:47 pm #

    After being thoroughly inspired by the workshop to see Credit Unions in a very positive light, a not-for-profit organisation that keeps money circulating locally, I called in to the Frankfort Gate office of the Plymouth Credit Union. I was given an envelope that contained application forms for a savings account and another for a child’s account that couldn’t be used unless the child in question went to a particular school that was part of the scheme.

    I wasn’t expecting or wanting a lot of marketing hype, but there was nothing at all in there to tell me about the Union and how it worked. I already knew that the account didn’t pay interest but a dividend which varied from year to year. When I asked about this dividend I was told it was about 1% last year, but as to whether it was taxable the two women, who had told me they were paid employees of the Union, looked embarrassed, and said they didn’t know, and that no-one had ever asked that question before.

    I went ahead and opened my account just the same, but I thought you might appreciate a bit of feedback. I think a short paragraph explaining the advantages of the local Credit Union would go a long way in improving the image of an organisation which, I’ve been told since, has people going into the shop in disguise because they’re ashamed of being seen to there.

  2. Paul Williams August 5, 2015 at 12:27 pm #

    We’re sorry you didn’t get all the information you were looking for when you came to open an account with CPCU. Our “About Credit Unions” fact sheet was not included in the pack as it was being updated, but you can you can print off this information from our website http://www.cpcu.co.uk

    In answer to your questions, interest / dividends on Credit Union savings is treated in the same way as other Investment income for tax purposes, so if you’re a taxpayer, you will have to declare it.

    Our Junior saving account is open to all from birth to 18 years of which time they become Adult Members with no need to pay the £2 fee. Our youngest member was 6 hours old.
    We currently have over 700 juniors actively savings.

    Thanks for supporting the credit union movement. We believe credit unions can offer saving and borrowing opportunities for everyone and we’re working hard to make that a reality (or something similar

    Paul Williams
    Manager

    On Behalf of City of Plymouth Credit Union