LAUGHTER and applause rang out as the Queen was handed two savings books for her sons Andrew and Edward with the words, “Small savers grow big, and we hope that the two young princes will grow big with us as savers.”
The presentation was made by Alex Currall, director of savings at the new, 6000-employee, £6 million headquarters of the National Savings Bank in Cowglen, Glasgow, in July 1970.
The Queen opened phases one and two of the building, five years after the government had announced that the bank would be relocating to Cowglen from London.
Hundreds of guests greeted the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh (the latter with his hand in a sling, the result of a polo accident) when they arrived at the building. The guests included the new Scottish Secretary, Gordon Campbell, and Pollok’s new MP, James White.
The Queen was shown a model (pictured) of the bank building.
In a speech she said: “The future wealth of the country depends on the savings which we make today. Over the past century the Post Office Savings Bank, now the National Savings Bank, has made an outstanding contribution to encouraging people to save, especially those who can only afford to put by small amounts. I wish every success to all those who work here.”
She also paid tribute to the late Iain Macleod, the Chancellor, who had died at 11 Downing Street just a few days earlier. He had been due to welcome the royal couple at Cowglen. His place was taken by Maurice Macmillan, chief secretary to the Treasury, who told the Queen: “I would rather it was not I but Mr Iain Macleod who was here to welcome you.”