Why credit unions?

The principle of credit unions was first suggested in the early 1800s by Robert Owen (1771-1858) who wrote many papers on the development of self-sufficient communities and is acknowledged as the founding father of the cooperative idea.

Credit Unions now operate in most countries. In Ireland they spread rapidly in the 1950s, forming The Credit Union League of Ireland in 1960. They are now very successful and part of the culture of the country and one of the shared values of the people.

In Britain credit unions were required to register with the Register of Friendly Societies and in 1979 the Credit Union Act was passed. More recently credit unions are monitored by the FSA in the same way as banks and building societies.

Rugby was late to have a credit union, formed only in 2004 following a Rugby CVS study group. Since then progress has been steady, reflecting a town and surrounding area with a population of around 80,000.

Watch this documentary about credit users and how its improved peoples lives...