Contributing to Save and Sound

Why should I get involved?

Save and Sound has been set up to collect, preserve and share the memories and experiences of people volunteering in or working in credit unions in the north of England from the 1960s to the 1990s.  With all the changes that have taken place in credit unions in the last thirty years, many staff and volunteers, as well as members using their services, are not aware of their unique heritage.

If you played any role in a credit union during this time, you could help create a valuable record of why and how people became involved and how credit unions operated. 

The project is keen to collect memories from people involved in all types of credit unions – employee, community and associational - all areas of the north of England – North West, North East, and Yorkshire and Humber, and from all trade associations or none. 

Even if you are not based in this area, please do get in touch, as we may be able to carry out some interviews outside of the north of England.  The Credit Union Foundation also hopes to extend this work in the future to other parts of England, Scotland, and Wales. 

What would being involved mean?

 If you decide to contribute, you will be asked to take part in an oral history interview.  This will happen at a time and place that is convenient for you and is likely to take one to three hours. 

An oral history interview provides an opportunity for you to share memories and thoughts about your experiences.  The interview will ask you about your life but will focus mainly on your experiences with the credit union.  It will be carried out by a trained volunteer researcher. 

Once the interview has taken place, we will make a summary of the interview and share that and a copy of the recording with you.  You will be able to provide comments on this and tell us to remove any parts of the interviews that you would prefer not to be used.  You will also be able to set a time limit on parts of the interview that you would like to be kept confidential for an amount of time.  Lots more information will be given about the process before  you agree to take part. 

What will happen to the interviews? 

The interviews will become part of the national oral history collection cared for by the British Library, where they will be available to generations of researchers. A new website will host interview clips, photos and other material collected from credit unions and digitised by volunteers. 

Interviewing and Covid-19

Oral history interviews work best when they are carried out face to face, but the project will only ask you to meet with an interviewer when it is safe to do so.  For now, we would love you to let us know if you may be interested.  We can then keep you up to date with our plans, which may have to change depending on how long Covid-19 restrictions remain in place. When we are ready to start interviewing, we will be in touch to discuss how this will be carried out. 

The safety of everyone taking part in the project is our priority; we will be following guidance issued by the British Library and the Oral History Society if we have to adapt our project plans. 

If you think you would like to get involved or if you have any questions, please contact Abbie Shelton at