Sheriff of Nottingham warns against high-interest lenders and loan sharks in Bulwell

Nottingham Credit Union. volunteer Andy Stowe and manager Ella Ferris
Nottingham Credit Union. volunteer Andy Stowe and manager Ella Ferris

The Sheriff of Nottingham will be taking to the streets of Bulwell town centre next Wednesday, 3rd December, between 11am and 11.30am to warn shoppers about the risks of using loan sharks, doorstep and payday lenders this Christmas.

The pressure on household budgets is high at Christmas with many people tempted to fund the festivities with high interest loans from often unscrupulous lenders.

However as the Sheriff, Bulwell Councillor Jackie Morris, will be pointing out to shoppers, there are alternatives, including responsible lenders like Nottingham Credit Union.

Nottingham Credit Union (NCU) offers a range of financial services - from savings and bank accounts to loans - just like a bank. However, unlike most financial services companies, NCU is a not-for-profit organisation – it prices its products to covers costs, not make money and its shareholders are its customers. And only people living or working in Nottingham and Nottinghamshire can join.

NCU has been operating in Bulwell for seven years now. Although the local office is no longer open, there are still over 2,000 NCU members from Bulwell and neighbouring areas Strelley, Bilborough and Aspley.

The main NCU office is on Maid Marian Way in Nottingham city centre. There is also a new website where NCU’s financial services can now be accessed.

Sheriff of Nottingham, Councillor Jackie Morris, said: “Everyone likes to push the boat out for Christmas. But for many, the reality is it can be a real struggle to find the money for nice food and presents so it can be a real temptation to turn to doorstep and payday lenders or even illegal loan sharks.

“It might be easier for some people to initially to get money this way but they certainly pay the price in the longer term through the huge interest rates charged.

“I would urge people to steer well clear of these lenders and look at responsible alternatives such as Nottingham Credit Union.”

Ella Ferris, General Manager at Nottingham Credit Union said: “There has been a lot of publicity recently about the massive interest charged by payday lenders but a loan from a doorstep lender can be even more expensive. The APR advertised by a doorstep lender might seem lower but it could actually cost you more to borrow from one.

“For instance, borrowing £300 from a well-known high street payday lender currently costs you £127.70 in interest at an APR of 5853%. Borrowing the same amount from a doorstep lender will cost you £246 in interest even though the advertised APR is 272.2%

“A £300 loan from Nottingham Credit Union would cost you much less - £58.26 with an APR of 42.6%.”