First day for volunteer-run enterprise
It's a red letter day for the Manx Credit Union.
The newly-formed enterprise, which has been almost three years in the making, is being officially opened this afternoon (19 Jan).
The MCU, which has an office on North Quay in Douglas, was set-up to help Island residents who cannot access mainstream banks.
The community savings and lending group already has 100 members - with many more keen to join.
The road to today's ribbon-cutting has been a long one.
Moves to form a Manx Credit Union began in 2013, and many hurdles have been overcome since - from garnering grassroots support to gaining the approval of regulator, the Financial Services Authority.
The MCU, which is run by volunteers and belongs to its members, offers nest-egg savings schemes to help residents avoid debt -whether that be next Christmas or when children go to university.
Loans, typically between £50 and £500, are already helping members avoid payday loan sharks.
Guest of honour at today's official opening is Colette Jacob, a retired health visitor who observed need in her community in the 1990s, and sowed the seeds for the first Manx Credit Union.