A Penny Savings Bank

Isle of Wight Observer January 5 1861

We are informed that several respectable persons intend establishing a penny savings bank in Ryde as soon as the necessary preliminary arrangements are dispensed with. A public meeting will be shortly convened at the Town-hall to procure members, and to consider the best manner of conducting the business of this provident bank towards making it as beneficial, useful, and convenient to those who may join it as possible. The step has our most hearty concurrence, and we hope some of our more wealthy residents will come forward and lend a helping hand in forming it, and relieve those who put by their trifles of as much expense as is possible of what will be incurred in starting it. This sort of thing has been attended with marked success in every town in England where it has been introduced, and we see no reason why it should not be of the like good service in this place. It will teach the working classes, who become subscribers to it, carefulness, and curb any little extravagance that may before have been indulged in through having such an institution as this about to be formed wherein to deposit their surplus earnings. Further particulars will be given in our next issue.

Isle of Wight Observer January 19 1861

In a recent number, we noticed that it was in contemplation to establish a Penny Savings Bank in Ryde; and now we have the pleasure of informing our readers that the thing is progressing as favourably as can be expected, considering how very difficult it is to secure a sufficiently large number of persons for a committee of management, whose punctuality in attendance may always be relied on, and who should be expert with their pens whilst the deposits are being received. On Friday, the 11th instant, E G Bass, esq., at a preliminary meeting held for the purpose, went at considerable length into the subject of Penny Banks, showing how admirably adaptable they are to the wants of the poor in affording facilities for the smallest deposits, and how well calculated to foster provident habits, and induce a practice of saving small sums which in the summer season are too often thoughtlessly squandered, but which in the winter months would be acceptable, especially when labour fails, or sickness prevents the father of a family following his usual occupation. Mr Bass laid before the meeting much interesting statistical information, with reference to the towns where these banks have been established – the date of their formation – the number of depositors and the amount taken on the first night – the number of accounts opened up to the 30th of September, 1859, – the sums paid in and the balance in hand to that date &c., from which it appeared that the total number of banks was about 184 – the accounts opened 150,999 – the amount paid in £107,225 – sums withdrawn £62,461 – leaving a balance in favour of depositors of £44,793. These and other statistics, he said, were obtained from H Clarke’s Penny Bank Circular, No 3. We shall take an early opportunity of recurring to the subject, when the organisation of the Penny Bank is somewhat more matured.

Isle of Wight Observer June 1 1861

At the first quarterly meeting of the general committee of this institution, held on Thursday, the 23 ult., E G Bass, Esq, in the chair – a statement was made of the operations of the bank, showing that it had met with a success much greater than its promoters could reasonably have anticipated. Although established but three months, and open only one evening in the week, there have been 646 depositors, who have paid in £150 11s 0d. Much credit is due to the gentlemen engaged in its management, and whose services it should be remembered are entirely gratuitous; and we do hope our readers will not fail to use their best efforts to induce their poorer neighbours to avail themselves of the facilities they now have of laying by, weekly or as often as they can, a  small sum towards creating a fund for themselves to fall back upon when failure of work or other unforeseen contingencies may arise. It should be generally known that sums from one penny to five shillings may be deposited at one time,  and that the total deposits of any one person must not exceed ten pounds. Interest in the rate of 2 1/2% or sixpence in the pound per annum, is allowed when the sum deposited amounts to one pound and is left in the bank for six months.

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