Mr Hutchinson, who was headhunted from Lloyds Bank in 1990 to run the society's retail operations, yesterday confirmed he was dismissed last Wednesday by Nationwide's chief executive Tim Melville-Ross.
'It's true. The official line the society is using internally is that there is a need for the society to focus on its core business and that my strategic planning area is - how shall I put it? - reduced in importance.'
Mr Hutchinson, 48, was in charge of strategic and corporate planning, marketing and the estate agency chain. A main board director, he is thought to have been on a salary of about pounds 160,000.
A compensation package is being negotiated. Nationwide has already agreed to compensate Mr Hutchinson for the inconvenience of moving: he moved from London to a house in Swindon last week. His daughter is in her A-level year.
The ill-timed sacking is another blow for the accident-prone Nationwide, Britain's second biggest society.
The decision to relocate to Swindon came only six months after it moved into a plush new headquarters building in London last December.
A Nationwide spokesman said last night: 'We can confirm that he is no longer with us.'Reuse content