Our history

Where it all started. See how we've grown as a building society over the last 125 years.

A brief synopsis of the Society's history since it began back in 1896....


Originally called the Fourth Post Office Mutual Building Society, the Society was incorporated on 3 March 1896, with offices at 87 Newgate Street, London EC.

As the original name suggests, the Society had been preceded by three earlier ones, the First, Second and Third General Post Office Clerks Building Societies. Each of these societies terminated once their members (then restricted to the employees of the Post Office) had been housed.

In 1899 the Society moved its offices to 181 Queen Victoria Street, London EC. This remained the Society's home until 1938 when it relocated to the newly built Brettenham House in Lancaster Place, Strand WC2.

In 1935 the Society introduced its first logo with the motto: Stability & Security, a description that could still apply today.


In 1946 the Society deleted "Mutual" from its name to become the Fourth Post Office Building Society and in 1960 the Garter King of Arms granted arms, supporters and a new motto, Rei Custos Tuae (Custodian of your Goods), to the Society.

The impressive coat of arms was duly adopted as the Society's logo, appearing on all its printed material for the next 30 years or so.

In 1965 the Society changed its name to the National Post Office Building Society and the following year moved its head office to Epsom Surrey.


The renamed Society pioneered the development of savings accounts by post, offering this innovation to all members of the public rather than dealing only with Post Office staff.

To reflect this widening of its membership, in March 1972 the Society's name was changed to National Counties Building Society and in 1973 it accepted the transfer of engagements from the Post Office Permanent Building Society.


When the Society celebrated its Centenary in 1996, it declared that it looked forward to continuing to provide its customers with 'best-buy' products backed by high quality service.

Towards the end of the year, it was one of the first building societies to operate a website, providing its existing and new customers with easy access to its products and services.

In 2001 the Society adopted its current logo, the design objective having been to 'modernise' the image, to reflect the directness of contact offered in relation to products and services and to give emphasis to the website address by featuring 'ncbs'.

2008 - 2014

We invested in proven, secure internet technology which enabled our customers to access their accounts and conduct transactions from the comfort of their homes and offices.

NCBS promoted the 'Online Saver', which was the society's first online-only savings account.

2014 and onwards


On 14 July 2014 National Counties launched the Family Building Society, specifically designed to help all generations of families across a wide set of financial offerings.

The Family Building Society was launched with an aim of offering innovative solutions, such as getting on the property ladder with as little as a 5% deposit, without having to borrow more money from family or another scheme. Our innovative and successful ‘Windfall Bond’ offer savers an alternative home for their money with the chance of a cash prize, and our Market Tracker saving products provide certainty of a reasonable return.

By ‘thinking outside the box’ the Family Building Society looks at the issues facing people today, and provides a different way of doing things.

This innovative thinking has been consistently recognised through a number of awards from respected organisations across our savings and mortgage range. The success of Family Building Society means that it became the lead brand for the Group in December 2016.

Since it’s launch, Family Building Society has published a series of informative reports in conjunction with respected institutions such as The Resolution Foundation and The London School of Economics on the issues that really matter to families, such as Stamp Duty reform, the ‘bank of mum and dad’ and intergenerational wealth transfers.

As a result of these studies, and other PR activities, Family Building Society is often quoted in the mainstream media.

Family Building Society is a trading name of National Counties Building Society which is authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority and the Prudential Regulation Authority.


How the Society is managed and governed

Find out about who we are, corporate and financial information, AGM results and more.


We are proud to have won a range of awards and achievements recognised by the industry.