Our story began way back in 19th century, when everyday life for many people was tough. The cities were bursting at the seams as families migrated from the countryside in search of work. For most of these families, renting a home was the only option, putting them at the mercy of unscrupulous landlords.

The newly emerging building societies offered a way out. They were formed when like-minded people came together to pool their savings, however small, and help each other buy homes of their own and improve their lot.

One such building society was the Co-operative Permanent Building Society, which first opened its doors in London in 1884. Over the next 135 years, the Co-operative Permanent grew and merged with around 250 other building societies. In 1970, it changed its name to Nationwide.

We’re proud of our history, proud of where we came from. And we still hold on to our founding purpose: helping each other to save and prosper, buy our own homes and build society, nationwide.