Bedford Church now takes deposits for ‘community bank’
Bedford Credit Union has opened a new branch inside St Mark’s Church Bedford. Uniquely among its outlets, the branch will be open every weekday from 9am-5pm. The Bishop of Bedford, the Rt Revd Richard Atkinson, opened the branch on Monday, 30 March.
Volunteers at the church have been trained so they will be able to offer visitors to St Marks the chance to join Bedford Credit Union and make payments into their accounts, at the church.
The Bishop of Bedford said,
“Our church supports credit unions in our community, they are owned by their members, not for profit, and they offer a vital alternative to high interest loans. Bedford Credit Union at St Mark’s Church will provide easy access for residents as the church office is open 9.00am – 5.00pm every weekday. I received two items in my email this week about the financial pressures faced by families and that was another reminder to me of the need for responsible lending and borrowing.”
Colin Bolster, Chairman of Bedford Credit union said
‘This is a great example of how different organisations can work together for the benefit of our local community and we very much hope that this initiative will be a great success.’
Keith Carter, General Manager of Bedford Credit Union, added: “This is the first outlet outside schools in Bedford Borough. This is an important step forward for us we really appreciate the partnership with the church in helping those who need help most. We are always open to forming working relationships with churches and community groups: we see ourselves as a community bank. ”
Bedford Credit Union (BCU) is a not-for-profit organisation owned and run by its members, providing savings facilities and low-cost loans. The BCU provides an alternative to High Street banks and doorstep lenders, encouraging regular saving and aiming to educate its members in money management. It can also signpost members to local debt counselling services.