Newcastle Building Society and the Glendale Gateway Trust has confirmed that they have agreed an intention to establish a community branch in Wooler.
Wooler has been without banking services since 2018. The intention of the partnership is to have a fully functioning community branch in place by the end of the year, conveniently based in the established Cheviot Centre community hub that boasts tourist information services, a library and community meeting spaces.
The Glendale Gateway Trust is a community development trust set up to support one of the most sparsely populated areas of the country. With a population of just 6,000 people, Glendale covers 250 miles of rural Northumberland.
The Trust has been active in creating significant improvements in the town, buying up neglected buildings to create modern and attractive affordable homes, promoting rural business development, and managing a community and business centre offering small business facilities and office pods for start-up businesses to rent.
The proposed partnership with Newcastle Building Society to bring financial services back to the town is part of a wider picture of the Trust’s successful regeneration and improvement programme, which has already rejuvenated a picturesque high street, and delivered an effective approach to building community sustainability.
For Newcastle Building Society, the move is part of a wider strategy to create a step change in how it delivers its services to towns and communities in the North East, Cumbria and North Yorkshire.
Creatively re-imagining its branch locations and adapting its approach to suit local needs, while increasing its branch network at a time when many banks and building societies are reducing their High Street presence, is part of a long term commitment to the provision of face to face local financial services and financial advice across its regions.
Wooler is the second in a number of additional, creative new locations Newcastle Building Society expects to announce this year. The Society announced a new community branch for Hawes in Wensleydale, North Yorkshire, earlier this week.