Like many businesses, the Society took advantage of the UK Government’s furlough scheme to protect jobs and support business resilience during the pandemic.
‘The pandemic brought uncertainty, and like many businesses the Monmouthshire was unsure what it would mean for colleagues, members and the organisation. The furlough scheme gave us the flexibility and agility we needed to ensure we could still operate effectively with a scaled back business model,’ said Dawn Gunter, Chief Operating Officer at the Society. ‘However, I am delighted we are now in a position where we can repay the support given to us, back into the economy, where more businesses can continue to be supported during such a challenging and unprecedented time.’
The Society focused on ensuring members had access to cash and services during the national lockdowns. The Monmouthshire’s commitment to access is further highlighted with the opening of a new branch in Brecon at a time when other financial services are scaling back provision on the high street.
‘As a modern mutual, we operate for the benefit of our members and the communities we serve. For us that means supporting members on their terms, both in branch and via digital platforms. Having come out of the pandemic in a much a stronger place than we were last year, we believe it’s the right and fair thing to do to repay the financial support given through the furlough scheme,’ said Debbie Lewis, Chair of the Board.
The Monmouthshire Building Society joins 125,000 businesses who have repaid some or all of their furlough support, given to employers under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. More than 11 million jobs have been protected since the scheme was launched by Chancellor Rishi Sunak back in March 2020.