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Business & Economy

Darlington Building Society cheers best results in 167-year history

A mutual has hailed its resilience in “volatile” times after achieving the best results in its 167-year history.

Darlington Building Society delivered record pre-tax profit of £5 million in 2022, with total assets rising to an all-time high of £833 million.

The figures – which put the organisation among the UK’s top 20 largest mutuals – were catalysed by record mortgage lending growth of £97 million and a rise in savings balances of £69 million.

And bosses say they will build on the success, vowing technological investments will be rolled out alongside an “absolute commitment” to traditional over-the-counter branch services.

They have also pledged to maintain staff and community support, having paid employees £1000 to cover the cost-of-living crisis and donated grants worth £268,000 to charities across County Durham, Teesside and North Yorkshire.

Andrew Craddock, chief executive, said: “Following the pandemic-related disruption in 2020 and 2021, I was expecting 2022 to start to see a return to more normal conditions.

“However, 2022 was again a challenging and volatile operating environment.

“International supply chain disruption, and the war in Ukraine, resulted in rising inflation, followed by the Bank of England increasing interest rates.

“2022 also witnessed considerable political upheaval in the UK and the death of the Queen.

“In the context of this environment, I am delighted with the strong performance (which is credit) to the dedication of staff, who rose to challenges presented by external events.”

Jack Cullen, chair, added: “We will continue to optimise, not maximise, our profitability, and will maintain an exceptional level of financial strength to provide the capacity to invest for the benefit of our members.

“Members can draw substantial confidence from the fact we have continued to show great resilience in testing times, underpinned by the mutual values of shared strength and co-operation.”