News

August 2001 – The annual report shows that an NHS executive director, Kate Priestley, has joined the board as a non-executive director. Our Comment – It would seem that either a full-time job with the NHS leaves plenty of time to spare or turning up at society boardroom meetings is a very occasional affair.  Now we…

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July 2001 – From the AGM – In the board’s continuing fight against members’ rights, it has decided to outlaw members’ resolutions without any change to the rule book.  This is said to be the latest legal interpretation of what members’ are not allowed to do.  This comes in response to attempts to make societies more…

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June 2001 – The latest Nationwide propaganda leaflet states “Members – not – shareholders are our focus so you can trust us to be open, honest and fair”. Our Comment – The exceptions seem to be with voting documents and when giving evidence to the Parliamentary Treasury Committee.  The same leaflet clams “Nationwide has always been…

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May 2001 – “Putting our customers first” (not members).  The Annual Report and Accounts contains a slight error, despite being voted on and approved and despite the fact that few members saw the report anyway.  The “compensation package” for the resigning chief executive was a mere £448,000 not £361,000 as shown in the report. Our Comment…

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May 2001 – New chairman Martin Ritchley (Chief Executive of Coventry BS) says this year’s event looks at ways to increase accountability to members. Our Comment – It is doubtful if they looked at it for very long as accountability is not a very popular subject with directors.

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May 2001 – Nationwide’s latest advertising campaign says it offers better savings rates not just today but always. Our Comment – Better than what is not made clear as other sources, including banks, offer better rates and Nationwide’s own rates are being cut along with all other societies.  It is doubtful if the Advertising Standards Authority…

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May 2001 – Some complaints about the previous board (all of the directors had to resign) of this troubled mutual society were that it was secretive, arrogant and treated members with contempt.  However, the new board of appointed members includes a Chelsea Building Society part-time director.  This does not bode well for change. The voting papers,…

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April 2001 – The board has rejected all of the pro-mutual resolutions put forward by Tim Tanner.  The directors have stated that the resolutions interfere with their ability to run the society.  On the contrary their action has in fact interfered with the rights of all members. This is probably the worst case of anti-mutual, anti-democracy…

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March 2001 – The voting papers are not only highly colourful and highly biased but this time the accompanying letter contains what is almost an instruction rather than a recommendation for members to vote in favour of the board’s wishes.  This is the society with the democratically elected Member of Parliament Gillian Shephard on the board. Our…

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