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Charity leaders, think-tank representatives and members of parliament came together this morning (Friday, 15 September) to shine a spotlight on financial wellbeing, as part of an event held by Yorkshire Building Society.

The event came ahead of UK Savings Week (18 – 24 September), hosted by the Society’s chief executive, Susan Allen, and director of savings Chris Irwin. Emma Hardy MP also addressed the room, which was filled with representatives from key money and debt charities in Yorkshire, researchers and business leaders from the region.

The mutual shared findings from its new report, Saving the Nation, which highlights the stark savings reality many face across the UK, and prompted discussion among those in attendance about improving financial wellbeing through better financial education and different ways of encouraging those who can, to save money.

Susan Allen, chief executive of Yorkshire Building Society, said: “It was a pleasure to host the event and see like-minded organisations coming together to discuss what more can be done to increase the UK’s financial resilience.

“Now more than ever, with current and potential future economic uncertainty, it’s important providers work together to help people improve their financial wellbeing. It’s clear from the discussions and conversations this morning that we share the same ambition to support people to save where they can, but we need meaningful action in the form of more financial education and better initiatives from policy makers.”

Findings from the Yorkshire’s report show the number of people unable to save money on a monthly basis has doubled since 2019, rising from one in ten (12%) to one in five (22%), while the UK’s financial wellbeing gap has widened as those able to save each month now put away 50% more than they did five years ago.

To address the issue, guests discussed the current challenges faced by many people right now and what needs to be done to support people in the region to save.

As part of its support for savers, Yorkshire Building Society has committed to paying above average savings rates to members, continuing its delivery of financial education sessions to children and young adults, and writing to the government to request they review the Personal Savings Allowance, to protect savers from paying as much tax on their hard-earned nest eggs.