Call on PM to back Rock shareholders
Campaigners have urged Prime Minister Theresa May to look again at the case for increased compensation for former Northern Rock shareholders.
Thousands of small shareholders – many of them pensioners and longterm savers – saw the value of their stake in the bank wiped out when it was nationalised 10 years ago.
The UK Shareholders’ Association (UKSA) has challenged the terms of the scheme set up by the Government to put a value on compensation for those whose shares were seized, when the bank was taken into public ownership.
Campaigners say the Government at the time effectively “rigged” the scheme by declaring that the bank was broke when it was nationalised, rendering shares worthless and reducing the compensation due, and that they have been treated differently from shareholders in other banks which were bailed out by the Government, such as RBS.
They have also argued that it was the Government’s failure to act quickly enough to guarantee savings that sparked the “run” on Northern Rock which saw savers withdraw millions of pounds and led to the bank’s collapse.
The Northern Rock Small Shareholder Action Group, part of the UKSA, yesterday handed in a letter to Number 10, asking the Prime Minister to review its latest report into the affair.
Sunderland-born chairman Dennis Grainger said: “The shareholders are asking only that the Prime Minister gives them the courtesy of simply reading and considering summary documents and discussing the matter
“Ultimately to perhaps consider the full 50-page report and reach her own conclusions.
He believes the Labour Government at the time always intended to prepare the solvent company for sale at a profit to the taxpayers.
Queues outside a former Northern Rock branch.