Walden Herts & Essex Building Society Company Information
The Saffron Walden Herts & Essex Building Society Company
is known that there was a Building Society in Saffron Walden in
1847, however the only remaining record of this is a bank passbook
now in the County Record Office.
January 1849 the 'Saffron Walden Second Building Society' was founded
by the Revd John Marten, who became its first Secretary. He was
Minister of Hill Street Baptist Church, and also Manager of the
Gas Company. The first Chairman was Joseph Durrant, a builder with
premises in King Street.
1857 this Society had become The Saffron Walden Second Benefit Building
and Investment Society on the Permanent Plan. The Directors in their
report for that year remarked on the 'very large amount of money
lent' - £1, 730
and unspectacular growth followed, with assets reaching £37,000
by 1900. At this time the Society was being operated from a solicitor's
office, but in 1930 it purchased its own premises in Limetree Passage
in Saffron Walden.
Assets had reached £300,000 by 1948 and the £1 million
mark was reached in 1959.
1965 the Society moved to premises in Market Place (which it vacated
in 1984) and total assets reached £2 million. In 1968 it took
over the small Saffron Walden & Essex Mechanics Permanent Building
Society and the following year the first Branch office was opened
1972 the Royston & District Building Society transferred its
engagements to the Society and by the end of 1978 the Society, then
known as the Saffron Walden & District Building Society, had
assets of more than £21 million and four offices.
1979 came a merger with the London and Essex Building Society and
the change of name to Saffron Walden & Essex. This merger, together
with the more substantial growth that had been taking place for
some years, led to the need for new and larger premises. In 1981
the Society had the opportunity of purchasing the redundant Cattle
Market site in Saffron Walden on which its current headquarters,
Saffron House, was built.
Society opened for business in its new office with its own "in-house"
computer system on the 16th January 1984 and in March of the same
year the Duke of Norfolk, who then was the President of the Building
Societies Association, officially opened the building.
In April 1989 the Society merged with the Herts & Essex Building
Society, based in Bishop's Stortford, which consolidated the Society's
position within the area.
Society's name was changed to the Saffron Walden Herts & Essex
Building Society - a name it has kept until the present day.
1A Market Street