The building society says it has delivered ‘a robust financial performance’ over the past 12 months with increased profits, but the most striking figures in its annual report are perhaps those that show the scale of the support it gave during the Covid-19 crisis.
Over 10 per cent of mortgage customers took a payment holiday with many of those 2,000 residential customers also needing additional overdrafts and mortgage offer extensions.
And more than 1,000 business also took the option of a payment holiday, accounting for over £250 million of mortgages across the hospitality, tourism and holiday let sectors.
The Cumberland also helped 55 charities and community projects with £198,000 worth of donations during the last 12 months.
Chief executive Des Moore speaks in the annual report of his pride in seeing how The Cumberland and its team responded to the crisis.
He says: “The challenges brought by the crisis are some of the toughest our business has faced in its 171 years, and certainly the most difficult anyone currently at The Cumberland has ever experienced.
“And yet I look back at the year with immense pride. The Cumberland has customers, communities and people at its core. The past 12 months have truly demonstrated that we have a business anchored in its values and united behind its purpose."
The vital role we play in our communities has been reinforced and our goal of making a positive difference reinvigorated. I have witnessed unparalleled levels of resilience, empathy and agility, and I’m proud to say that everyone in your Society has valiantly risen to the challenge.
The annual report details The Cumberland’s ‘robust financial performance’ which saw pre-tax profits rise to £10.5m (2020: £8.3m).
The pandemic also led to a rapid rise in deposits and savings as well as an increasing demand for mortgages through the year. The building society now provides almost £2.2bn worth of mortgages.
The year was also notable for The Cumberland achieving a Platinum Trusted Service Award with Feefo on back of feedback from customers and it also celebrated getting a one-star accreditation with Best Companies.
That award was a high point for the company which has put such a strong emphasis on colleague development and support as a central part of its plans to equip the company for the changing financial market. The Cumberland team are praised in the report for their resilience and the way many had to adapt to home working which has continued into 2021. At the same time the company has increased its support for its employees with flexible working, regular welfare calls and mental health champions in all departments.
I am humbled by the resilience and dedication our loyal colleagues have shown over the past 12 months. It has reinforced our belief that we have a unique team of great people who are committed to doing the right thing. Collectively, they have gone to extraordinary efforts to support our customers while ensuring the health and safety of all.
Key highlights of the year are summarised below: