Wolverhampton and South Staffordshire’s biggest community-based credit union has saved local people £1.2 million in the interest they would have paid on high interest payday and doorstep loans.

At their annual general meeting this week, members of Wolverhampton City Credit Union (WCCU) voted in favour of a dividend of one per cent on their instant access savings for the year ending September 30, 2017.

The chair of the not-for-profit bank, Alfred Williams, said:

“We have been tireless in our determination to take on the high interest lenders and loan sharks who target people on low incomes and blight our communities. Our growth in responsible, ethical lending means we’ve saved our members £1.2 million on high interest loan repayments in 2016/2017 – that’s a saving of over £2.2 million since 2015.

“That’s not only good news for individual members and their families. The more money they save on loan repayments, the more they can spend in their neighbourhoods, boosting the local economy.”

He added that the credit union had taken on doorstep lenders and loan sharks in local communities by setting up two pop-up credit unions in Low Hill and The Scotlands. “This innovative development in 2017 has seen a growth in members, savings and ethical loans in those neighbourhoods, places that are cynically targeted by lenders who profit out of people’s financial desperation and who care little about the impact of problem debt.”

The credit union had also signed up five more local employers to its payroll deduction scheme in 2017 which enables local workers to save or repay affordable loans directly from their salary. Bushbury Hill Estate Management Board, Radleigh Metal Coatings, Gazebo and Woodlands Quaker Home join the credit union’s roll call of employer partners which includes:

• City of Wolverhampton Council
• FBC Manby Bowdler
• Paycare
• Royal Wolverhampton NHS Trust
• South Staffordshire Council
• South Staffordshire Housing Association
• The Accord Group
• The Way Youth Zone
• Wolverhampton Homes
Among the credit union’s achievements in 2017:
• Savings of £3,006,595 – 15% increase
• Loans of £1,427,395 – 16% increase
• Income generated increased by nine per cent to £459,130
• Cost of bad debt was reduced to £20633

During the year, a survey of members showed improvements in levels of customer satisfaction with 90.32 per cent reporting that they were very satisfied or satisfied with the credit union while 97.3 per cent said they were likely or very likely to recommend the credit union to their friends or relations.

The Annual Report is published here.

Wolverhampton City Credit Union (WCCU) is a not-for-profit community bank that is owned and controlled by its members. It uses members’ savings to fund fair and affordable loans to other members. The interest paid back from loans is used to fund a return – in the form of an annual dividend – on members’ savings.

Based in Worcester Street with a presence at the Civic Centre, Wolverhampton, WCCU is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and authorised and regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority who regulate all the banks and building societies. WCCU is also a member of the Financial Services Compensation Scheme (FSCS) and it holds a Consumer Credit Licence that is registered with the Financial Conduct Authority.



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