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The report, which is drawn from a survey of 2017 bank customers from around the UK, was undertaken between 1st and 18th October 2013 and includes the views of customers of the newly separated Lloyds and TSB banks.
Among the findings, the report also reveals the top performing bank brands in the eyes of their customers, what factors are likely to attract new customers and gives a clear indication of what it is that makes a great banking experience. Sholto Lindsay-Smith, partner at Industry, says: “61% of consumers are actually happy with their bank, showing that the banks generally satisfy consumers’ needs.
The report’s Brand Advantage Ranking reveals consumers’ overall opinion of the 23 banks in the study. The Industry Benchmark Report reveals that, in the eyes of the banks’ customers, Metro Bank, First Direct and Nationwide have the highest levels of recommendation by their own customers, all outperforming the traditional high street banks.
Prompted by the new switching guarantee and burst of bank advertising, 20% of consumers are more likely to switch now than at any other time. The report concludes that consumers still see the traditional banks continuing to provide a key role in the future and, despite speculation about the break-up of the big banking groups, consumers appear to believe that the big banks are here to stay.
Global Banking & Finance Review is a leading financial portal and Print Magazine offering News, Analysis, Opinion, Reviews, Interviews & Videos from the world of Banking, Finance, Business, Trading, Technology, Investing, Brokerage, Foreign Exchange, Tax & Legal, Islamic Finance, Asset & Wealth Management. Lancelot “Capability” Brown made a big impression as a landscape architect on our image of the countryside. Brown worked extensively for 32 years, radically changing the view of the landscape on more than 170 sizeable commissions. His longest commission was for the Earl of Exeter at Burghley House near Stamford, Lincolnshire.
Brown started work at Burghley in 1756, the earl having in readiness commissioned a detailed survey. George London and Moses Cook had worked comprehensively at Burghley in the late 1600s and their extensive formal gardens and avenues can be seen around the house and the parkland.
This type of axial formalism was predominant in England’s large Renaissance gardens, where designers such as London and Henry Wise drew inspiration from the formal French gardens of Andre Le Notre, who designed the landscape for Versailles.
These gardens required colossal quantities of labour and this, no doubt, had a big influence on their removal. At Burghley, Brown proved he was more than just a designer, solving the serious drainage issues in and around the house by creating the large serpentine lake, “The New River”, which now divides the Middle Park from the Lower Park adjacent to the house. All of the avenues except two (North Avenue and Queen Anne’s Avenue) were either clear-felled or had large chunks of them removed.

Looking at what he created today illustrates his genius and strengths in many fields aside from aesthetics. Peter Glassey, the current head of forestry, park and gardens at Burghley, says that several different tree species were used according to the local soil type, indicating an intimate knowledge of soils and what suits them. Presumably Brown gleaned much of this knowledge from locals who worked with the land, knew areas intimately and had picked up information from their forebears. Inevitably, sometimes things on site went wrong, with several commissions taking place at once in different parts of the country.
Peter would walk around with Lady Victoria Leatham, the previous chatelaine of the house, who queried the masses of growth of native scrub willows by the lakeside, which were obscuring views. In the past, deer would have kept this regenerative growth under control, but because a fence was moved back it enabled native scrub to colonise the ground. This led to funding, and a 10-year plan to reinstate this important historic landscape was put in place. Just recently, removing planting such as Sycamore Wood (which was mainly oak and Norway spruce planted in 1984) has immediately allowed visual links between the Higher and Middle Parks and the Lower Park and the house. Not only will the felled woodland be replaced elsewhere in the park, 311 individual standard trees will also be planted: sweet chestnut, cedar of Lebanon, oak, beech, Macedonian pine, hornbeam, common lime and large-leaved lime. It will be an amazing achievement and hopefully by Brown’s 300th anniversary in 2016 we will be able to enjoy probably the most perfect Capability Brown design in all its glory, thanks to Peter Glassey and his team who are faithfully working to the great man’s plans. It also sheds light on a wide range of factors that make some bank brands more successful and attractive than others in the eyes of consumers.
Comparisons are drawn between the responses of the banks’ customers in 2013 and baseline data from 2011. Nationwide has the strongest score with 44% of respondents rating it one of the best or better brands.
When respondents were asked to speculate on which type of brands from other sectors they could imagine running the best bank in the future, HSBC, the only bank in this ranking exercise, came top followed by PayPal and Visa, and then Tesco, Amazon and Google. But for most consumers it appears that banking is something best done by banks,” adds Sholto Lindsay-Smith.
The 18th-century landscape garden consisting of contrived glimpses of sinuous lakes, strategically placed clumps of trees, gently undulating parkland and sweeping lawns is often defined as England’s single greatest contribution to European culture. A copy of this survey, carried out by John Haynes in 1755, shows a radically different layout from what we see today.

The parkland would most likely have been wood pastures at that time, used for grazing and timber. These damp problems were due to a fault line that naturally occurs there where the blue clay and limestone meet. For instance, Brown planted oaks near the natural spring line (where the clay and limestone meet) where the soil is heavier; elsewhere sweet chestnut is used on the lighter, freer-draining soils with body. He was always aware that Burghley was one of the finest examples of a Capability Brown landscape.
At that time, Peter thought that this fabulous naturalised habitat was brilliant for wildlife.
Recently, though, as part of the Higher Level Stewardship scheme that provides funding to farmers, a report on the park was carried out and a historian was brought in to evaluate the parkland. Now much work is being carried out, with post-Brown plantings of woods and trees – intended as commercial crops, for example cricket bat willows and cover for shooting – that have obscured Brown’s original intentions being removed.
His many curving approaches provide enticing and changing views as you approach the finest Elizabethan house in England.
The opinions of Halifax, NatWest, Barclays, HSBC, Santander and The Cooperative Bank have dropped since 2011. By all accounts, Brown, the son of a yeoman Northumbrian farmer, got on very well with the ninth earl, who loved the countryside.
His success was due to his ability as a contractor in seeing the work through to its conclusion. A landscape is ephemeral and Brown’s was being slowly obscured under new planting and the natural regeneration of shrubs and trees.
Barclays showed the biggest fall from 47% in 2011 to 37% in 2013, followed by The Cooperative Bank, which dropped from 36% to 27%.
Not only did he have shrewd observational powers and artistic skills but he was a great businessman and worked tremendously hard. When the work is completed, hopefully we will be able to appreciate the brilliance of Brown’s scheme more than any other generation as it has matured and really bedded in.

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Author: admin | 05.05.2014 | Category: Simple Shed Plans

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