Milton Keynes Council teams up with credit union to beat the loan sharks

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Milton Keynes Council is working in partnership with a credit union to offer loans to people in financial need in a bid to beat the loan sharks.

Fast track loans to help those most in need are being organised by Milton Keynes Council in partnership with the local Swan Credit Union.

Officers working for the council’s Local Welfare Provision team will refer residents in financial need to the Swan Credit Union - formerly Milton Keynes Credit Union.

Provided they are eligible residents will receive a maximum loan of £600 - agreed by the Local Welfare Provision team - that will bypass the normal credit union rule requiring new members to save for three months before being granted help.

Loans will be granted at the discounted rate of 1.5 per cent per month on the declining balance (19.6 per cent APR) and it is hope this will help many residents avoid the temptation of turning to loan sharks that charge extortionate interest rates.

Also the council will be urging tenants to have their benefits paid into their credit union account so that the credit union can take away the worry of paying rent to the landlord by organising rent payments on tenants’ behalf.

Edith Bald, cabinet member responsible for Housing and Finance, said: “This is just one of the things we are doing to help people manage their finances safely and keep well away from loan sharks. In addition I am delighted with the arrangement for tenants to make rent payments via the credit union.

“I will be promoting even closer links with the credit union in the future.”

The Swan Credit Union is supported by Milton Keynes Mayor Councillor Brian White and both MPs for Milton Keynes, Iain Stewart and Mark Lancaster, as well as by councillors, town and parish councils, churches and other community organisations.

For further information, phone Swan Credit Union on 030303 00147 or MK Council on 01908 253040 or email