Ipswich Building Society changes its name in 'crucial' rebrand

An artist's impression of what the Hadleigh branch of Ipswich Building Society will look like after it rebrands.

An artist's impression of what the Hadleigh branch of Ipswich Building Society will look like after it rebrands to Suffolk Building Society. - Credit: Ipswich Building Society

A Suffolk-based building society has changed its name to reflect where its customers live - removing the word "Ipswich" for the first time in its 172-year history.

Ipswich Building Society announced that it will now be known as Suffolk Building Society at its 171st AGM on March 30, , with the change to take place later in 2021.

The company was founded in 1849 and went through several name changes. Originally known as Ipswich and Suffolk Permanent Benefit Building Society, it became Ipswich Building Society in 1975.

Last year, a landslide 93% of its eligible members voted the latest change through and the company's rebrand will be rolled out online and in person this autumn.

Bosses at the building society say the new name and brand is "designed to both widen the society’s appeal and promote growth".

James Norrington, chief executive of Ipswich Building Society

Richard Norrington, chief executive of Ipswich Building Society   - Credit: James Fletcher

Richard Norrington, chief executive at Ipswich Building Society, said: “Our 171st AGM comes after a challenging year for everybody, and we know that right now, many members will be seeking information about the impact of Covid-19 on the society's future operations.

"I’m delighted that, as an essential service, our branch facilities have remained available with additional measures to safeguard our employees and our visiting members.

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“Our members have continued to support the society throughout the pandemic. We have seen high volumes of business and, in fact, we welcomed nearly 1,500 new savers and opened over 3,000 new savings accounts over the course of our financial year. 

“We have always been here to ‘protect the money of generations for generations’ and this is the case both now and in the future as we put in place the processes to implement our change of name.

"This name change is crucial for the future sustainability of the society, and I thank our members who voted in favour of our decision.”

According to research commissioned by the building society, the proposed new name is more inclusive and sustainable, and it "appeals to people within the society's home county and beyond".

Alan Harris, chairman of Ipswich Building Society

Alan Harris, chairman of Ipswich Building Society - Credit: James Fletcher

Alan Harris, chairman of Ipswich Building Society, said: "This AGM and the member approval of our name change last year marks an important new era in our history, and it seems especially important today to thank all of our staff for their ongoing dedication and commitment.

"We very much look forward to continuing to serve our communities both locally, regionally and nationally as we begin our journey towards becoming Suffolk Building Society.”