British Credit Union Historical Society

Castle & Cristal Credit Union Ltd

Established in September 1993, Castle & Crystal was originally an employee based credit union, operating for the benefit of Dudley MBC employees. Twenty years later, our services have now become widely available to everyone living or working within the Dudley borough, the county of Worcestershire and to partner organisations that are included in our Common Bond. The future vision is to have a branch in each of the four main townships in the borough of Dudley, namely Dudley, Stourbridge, Halesowen & Brierley Hill and also a number of branches across the county of Worcestershire.

The head office in Dudley services the needs of our 4000 active members, who come from all walks of life & enjoy the same standard of excellent customer service during every visit. Castle and Crystal has taken advantage of recent changes in legislation meaning credit unions can now offer corporate accounts to organisations as well as individuals. During 2013, Castle & Crystal have welcomed over £100,000 in investments from local organisations, community groups & churches alike. Their investment into the credit union will increase the supply of affordable credit providing competitive savings and loans for the members. This ultimately continues to help the economic development and stability of communities within the local area regardless of location.  The Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Steve Waltho, marked the achievement of serving its 10,000th member with a special presentation in April 2016.


Northamptonshire Credit Union Ltd

Began life as Northampton Credit Union in May 1997, offering services to the staff of Northampton Borough Council. It rapidly expanded to take in all people living or working in Northampton, merging with smaller credit unions as it grew. It was 2003 when the common bond was extended and covered the whole of Northampton allowing the merger of Heath Credit Union. 2010 with the help of funding from the DWP growth fund the credit union increased its membership, employed staff and moved to new premises. By 2012 the credit union expanded to cover the whole of Northamptonshire. In the spring of 2013, three credit unions in the county, namely the Northampton Credit Union, the Golden Sheaf Credit Union in Kettering and the Five Wells Credit Union in Wellingborough, merged to form the Northamptonshire Credit Union. At the same time the common bond was expanded to take in the Cherwell district of Oxfordshire. To help people across the catchment area to access the Credit Union's services, they ran various collection points in addition to the main access point at the One Stop Shop within Northampton's Guildhall. The credit union works in conjunction with East Midlands Credit Unions (EMCU) and especially Clockwise Credit Union to offer current accounts and budget accounts to all members. Further expansion of the common bond in 2016 covered parts of Oxfordshire Buckinghamshire and Bedfordshire and mergers took place with Weston Favell & District Credit Union, (Northampton) and Blackbird Leys Credit Union (Oxford).  In celebration of the 20th anniversary 2017 and in recognition of the expanded area, the credit union has taken on a new name and logo “HARVEST MONEY”.  with more than 7,000 Members an estimate that in the last five years alone have saved members more than £1.4 million in interest payment. 2017 also the credit union has also issued loans totalling £752,000 during the year and signed up 771 new members. 

The National Fire Savers Credit Union Ltd

 was first established in 1998 as a credit union for London Fire Brigade staff (The London Fire Savers Credit Union). Here are some key dates and milestones in their development

January1998, Sub Officer John Etheridge forms group to establish a new credit union for London Fire Brigade.

June 1998, London Fire Savers Credit Union registered with Registrar of Friendlily Societies (No. 541C) and starts trading with 500 members.

September 1999, Assets exceed half a million pounds.

May 2000, First full time staff member recruited.

November 2001, FSA take over from Registrar of Friendly Societies as regulatory body. London Fire Savers Credit Union registered as No. 213995.

January 2001, the 1,000th member joins.

February 2009, Offices relocate to new LFB headquarters at Union Street

August 2009, new model rules registered with FSA.

 April 2010, National Fire Savers formed by the extension of common bond to include all fire & rescue authorities with England, Scotland & Wales.

September 2011, Assets exceed three million pounds.

May 2012, Offices relocate to Linton House, 164-180 Union Street and third full time member of staff recruited.

March 2013, Share deposits in NFS exceed four million pounds.

January 2014, offering their staff payroll deductions affiliates North Wales Fire & Rescue to the Credit Union.

 March 2014, Share deposits in NFS exceed five million pounds.


Write a new comment: (Click here)
Characters left: 160
DONE Sending...
See all comments

| Reply

Latest comments

18.08 | 14:55

I am very proud to be a part of the credit union and the ethos of people helping people.

Congratulations to No1 CopperPot.

14.07 | 04:57

A very inspiring and educational experience. It awaken my interest to serve the community.

01.07 | 13:06

As schools Development Worker for Unify Credit Union, I found the schools project resources very useful.... some really good ideas, Thank you x

23.11 | 16:41
Your CU Resources Has received 2
You liked this page