In December 2021, we revealed ambitious plans to deliver Wales’s very first Community Bank — one of the biggest and most exciting developments in Monmouthshire Building Society’s history.
With strong support from Welsh Government, Community Bank for Wales will lead the way in providing high-quality, accessible retail banking to communities across Wales.
Building on the Society’s strong experience and reputation as a leading Welsh brand, the community bank will be based on our current mutual model — meaning it will be owned by, and run for, the benefit of our members.
With many retail banks leaving high streets across Wales, many people and communities have lost access to much valued banking services.
People who rely on face to face banking and rural communities have been hit the hardest. This often includes people and businesses who are more reliant on cash, those with financial vulnerabilities or health challenges and people that don’t only want to manage their finances online.
This financial exclusion has a huge detrimental impact on society and the economic, cultural and even environmental wellbeing of a sustainable Wales.
And we don’t think that’s right.
So we’re addressing this lack of provision and market failure by developing and delivering a Community Bank for Wales.
Our Community Bank for Wales will be owned by and run for the benefit of our members.
We will provide bilingual, everyday retail banking products and services for individuals and businesses, accessible through telephone, digital and, crucially, a network of physical outlets located across Wales.
Headquartered at our home in Newport, our Community Bank will:
We believe this is the right thing to do — for our members, future members and for Wales.
We want our community bank to be a strong and sustainable financial services provider that has a long and successful presence on high streets across Wales for years to come.
Since we announced our plans, the UK’s economic situation has changed significantly.
Against a backdrop of rising interest rates, a contraction of the mortgage market, falling house prices and a cost-of-living crisis, the Bank of England is predicting a ‘lengthy’ recession.
After much analysis and scrutiny, we’ve decided the current economic conditions aren’t right for launching a successful and commercially viable community bank.
As a purpose-driven mutual building society, our desire to roll out a community bank for Wales remains strong so we’re updating our plans to launch at a time of greater economic certainty.
Establishing a community bank is not easy so it’s more important to get it right than get it quickly. Making sure we launch at the right time is the right and responsible thing to do for our current members, future members and the communities we serve.
We’ll continue to monitor the economic and financial situation and market predictions to make sure we launch at an appropriate time.
We’ll keep this page updated with developments on our Community Bank for Wales.