Members unable to nail N&P
Thursday 27 April 1995
"Everyone has a price, don't they. Mine would be about £500," said Keith Parker at the meeting at a hotel in Bradford.
He was there with 150 mainly elderly society members hoping to be given further details on the much-publicised talks to be held next month between Abbey National's chief executive, Peter Birch, and his N&P counterpart, Alastair Lyons.
"This is the first meeting I've been to and I have been a member for over 20 years," said Mr Parker, a retired Leeds University lecturer. "There doesn't seem to be much difference between being a member of a mutual society and being a shareholder in a public company.But I'm here to hear what the directors have to say before making up my mind."
Sadly for him and others present, further clarification was not on offer at the meeting. Lord Shuttleworth, N&P chairman, elegantly side-stepped questions raised from the floor about Abbey's proposed takeover.
Many of those present were in no doubt about their priorities. Eric Sunderland, a Bradford city councillor, said to loud applause: "One of my concerns is that the society should remain in the city. If Bradford is anything it is the heart of the building society movement."
Others were equally hostile. Brenda Wilkinson, a retired magistrates' clerk from Bradford, said: "I have an open mind, but it does seem as if it's all to do with bigger monopolies. If N&P merges, what happens to all their offices?"
A similar view came from Selwyn Smith, a retired engineer from Leeds. "I stand to benefit from the C&G takeover by Lloyds Bank, because I'm a member. I'm also a member of Leeds Permanent, so I should get something from the merger with the Halifax. But I am concerned that we could see people losing their jobs, all for the sake of others getting just a few pounds more."
The only detailed questions came from Yvonne Rose, a former N&P employee and now an independent financial adviser based in Leeds. She pointed out that last year N&P lent only £8m to mortgage borrowers compared with £394m in 1993 and £989m the year before. N&P's ratio of income to costs dropped from 45.6 per cent in 1993 to 46.8 per cent last year.
Easter egg hunt horror as mother finds dead body under deck of house
Missing Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370: Wreckage could be found within a week as search reaches 'very critical juncture', says minister
South Korea ferry disaster: Released transcripts show chaos and confusion in the moments before ferry sinks
Unbeliebable: The White House offer 'no comment' to anti-Justin Bieber petition
Loch Ness Monster found on Apple Maps?
The food poverty scandal that shames Britain: Nearly 1m people rely on handouts to eat – and benefit reforms may be to blame
Scottish independence: It is the English who should be on their knees, begging the Scots to vote ‘No’
Nigel Farage fatigue? Half of voters ‘immune’ to Ukip’s appeal
'Sinful': Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy comes under attack
Nigel Farage: I’m taking on the status quo, and the Establishment’s fighting back
Refugee facing deportation from Sweden saved by fellow passengers refusing to let plane leave
- 1 Easter egg hunt horror as mother finds dead body under deck of house
- 2 A bottle of wine a day is not bad for you and abstaining is worse than drinking, scientist claims
- 3 Unbeliebable: The White House offer 'no comment' to anti-Justin Bieber petition
- 4 Loch Ness Monster found on Apple Maps?
- 5 How We Met: Alison Moyet & Emma Kennedy: 'I knew we'd be friends because she was happy to make a prat of herself'
iJobs Money & Business
Negotiable: Harrington Starr: Database Team Lead ( Leadership, Sybase, Compute...
£40000 - £50000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: C#.NET D...
£25000 - £35000 per annum + Bonus+Benefits+Package: Harrington Starr: VB.NET S...
£45000 - £55000 per annum + Bonus and Benefits: Harrington Starr: Trade Suppor...