Triodos Bank Comments on RBS/Natwest Customer Charter

I decided last year to start investing some of my savings with Triodos Bank. As a green and ethical citizen I though that I'd vote with my "green" and give it to an ethical bank that would invest my meagre savings in a positive way. Whilst I've deposited the tiniest amount with them, I intend to move most of my savings to Triodos to ensure all my money is being looked after by and invested in sustainable causes.

So it was great interest today that I saw a press release from Triodos Bank - Hot on the heels of the RBS Customer Charter and the Natwest Customer Charter it seems that Triodos are about as pleased with RBS and Natwest as RBS and Natwest customers are! Here's the Triodos press release:

Commenting on the RBS / Natwest customer charter, Charles Middleton, UK managing director at Triodos Bank, said:

“These service commitments should be bread and butter for all banks. Firstly, customers have a right to a basic level of service yet it’s clear that some banks continue to fail to deliver. Little wonder, then, that when asked, one in five (21%)  Brits could not find a single reason to recommend their bank*.

“Customers are entitled to expect more from their banks.  The customer service element should be a given but we believe the public should be asking for, and getting, more than this, for example, some sense of what their bank is doing with the money they entrust to it, and greater transparency on investment decisions.  Amazingly, 35% of UK banking customers think their money simply sits in a bank vault or benefits from occasional interest. Few realise how a bank may actually be using their money, and most banks don’t make it easy for customers to be more aware of this and give their opinion. However, 61% of people would like to be with a bank that shares their values.

“We urge dissatisfied customers to take action, approach their banks and demand not just a basic level of service, but more than this, including transparency on how they use savers’ deposits, so that the public can vote with its feet on issues that matter to them.”

A recent, separate survey among Triodos Bank customers revealed 94% of the ethical bank’s customers would recommend Triodos to others.  Other findings from Triodos customer survey among 1000 customers in February:

  • 63% choose to save with Triodos as they know how their money is being used
  • Less than 5% feel negative or indifferent about saving with Triodos, most customers are satisfied, happy, content
  • 51%  trust Triodos to do the right thing
  • 69% feel like they are doing the right thing by banking with Triodos

* Opinium Research carried out an online survey of 2,000 UK adults aged 18+ from 19th to 21st January 2011. Results have been weighted to nationally representative criteria.

Well, I wasn't polled or interviewed but I can say, as a green, an environmentalist, cheerleader of localism, organic food fan, ethics ambassador, supporter of social responsibility & sustainability  etc etc etc that I feel 100% satisfied with the way Triodos Bank handle and invest my money.

Long may it continue


caution triodos have dealings with royal bank of scotland ask them about it

Have you got any more details before I investigate further, Jez? :-)

dont loose faith, for a bank triodos have 2 b one of the best. i did make suggestions as to other banks or post office to pay into. triodos said 'these things take time to set up' didnt take me long to change my accounting so i could safely pay in by post again, and so rbs get none of my cash! triodos have had years to make changes. how long do they need?

Jez, thank you so much for taking the time to respond, it's much appreciated.

As a bank lacking in branches, Triodos does require agents to act on their behalf so I would assume that's why they use RBS - It makes sense due to the nationwide branch coverage, so I can understand that.

However, knowing that the deal might have been struck at a time when RBS were laying off large numbers of staff and making aggressive acquisitions, particularly during the time of Fred "The Shred" Goodwin, that seems the least ethical choice indeed! (I understand Fred Goodwin received a knighthood for "services to banking" some years ago but I refuse to address him as "Sir" when he presided over the biggest financial loss in British corporate history and was *still* rewarded handsomely for his failures - what an utterly despicable man.)

I shall investigate further and see what I can unearth. I haven't lost my faith in Triodos Bank but this is a potential blemish on their copybook.

i got suspicious when i asked where i could pay my cheques in. 'rbs' i was told. do they charge a fee? i asked 'yes' was the reply.- it used 2 b triodos who got the bill now its the customer. seems they chose rbs coz they were the most ethical bank at the time of launching triodos in the uk. how about changing 2 a more ethical one? i asked 'these things take time' i was told. i dug deeper. seems they have somekind of contract? with rbs and are tied, something 2 do with credit card customers? i am a long time customer of triodos. i have asked them 2 come clean and make this public. they have lost my respect until they do.(i received a bill from rbs after using the pay in sevice, i had been paying in at rbs as triodos were paying the fee, so i thought on their conscience not mine. when rbs changed their charges it got passed on to the customer. i refused to give any of my cash 2 rbs. after many calls, triodos payed my bill.) made me realise they are a BANK firstly, in it for the opportunities and possibly taking advantage of people like you and me.

Just simple: RBSGroup banking with Natwest and Royal Bank of Scotland together in cooperation with Banco Santander is not safe. Taxpayers Money over £ 274 Bn and they stole with credit falsified signatures and contracts over £ 32 Bn with Comfort Card in The Netherlands