How our colleagues helped during the pandemic


During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, all our colleagues worked hard to keep things running as usual and to provide extra help to customers who needed it. 

Some colleagues in particular really went out of their way to help during this challenging time – from going the extra mile in their professional role, to charity fundraising or supporting their local communities.

A number of these colleagues have been featured in a series of portraits displayed in our Gresham Street headquarters in London, and which you can see below.

Samantha Cresswell

IT Cyber team, Manchester

Our Cyber Security teams are world experts in combatting computer viruses – but in 2020, a physical virus posed a new challenge in their efforts to keep us safe.

Samantha (Sam) Cresswell took the challenge head on by providing additional IT support to those in branches and call centres, travelling in to support them, in person, at a time when many were afraid to leave their homes. Sam helped those who didn’t have the means to work from home get their equipment set up, enabling more people to work safely and effectively from home and preventing the spread of the virus.

Our Connect colleagues were particularly grateful for Sam’s support and her efforts played a part in enabling us to get 50,000 people working from home (up from 15,000) in a matter of weeks.

Karen Kidd

Insurance & Wealth Transformation team, Edinburgh

Gwen Colquhoun

Mortgage Operations team, Edinburgh

When the outbreak of coronavirus introduced a need to wear face masks, many found themselves without this basic protective equipment due to low supplies.

Gwen Colquhoun invested her time to hand-make hundreds of facemasks which were sent, along with donations she had raised with friends and family, to various charities and NHS workers across the region.

Gwen also supported NHS workers by making washing bags for them so they could easily store and clean their uniforms.

Tony Lopes

Lloyds Bank branch, London

Graham Kealing

Halifax branch, Leeds

Bad weather doesn’t just create problems for our general insurance teams: for our customers, it can make getting into a branch or accessing good internet a real struggle.

For one elderly customer, the snow in January 2021 left her stranded outside the Halifax Hunslet Branch with no way of getting home. Graham went the extra mile, borrowing a wheelchair from the next door Morrisons store and pushing the customer home – for two miles, uphill, in the snow – supported by his colleague Amey who carried the customer’s shopping. An hour later, the customer was safely home, applauding Graham for his support.

Michelle Agyemang

Retail Transformation team, Edinburgh

Ann-Marie Reid

Halifax branch, Brixton

Ann-Marie Reid is a role model for what it means to be a bank ‘in the community’. As the Brand Ambassador for the Brixton Halifax branch, Ann has helped to establish strong relationships in local communities across South London.

Showing sensitivity to the number of people living in council accommodation in the local area, Ann volunteered her time to help educate these customers through a series of ‘Right to Buy’ presentations in the branch, sharing practical ways customers can work towards home ownership. The workshops received great feedback not just from the customers, but also from a local council representative who came along to support the sessions.

Mohamed Soliman

Enterprise Technology team, London

Asli Ozpehlivan Gungor

Design team, London

Coronavirus affected all parts of the UK economy, but small businesses were among the hardest hit. When revenues fell and supply chains halted, Lloyds Banking Group moved quickly to introduce the products and solutions to help them.

Putting these products in place – in some cases, within a week or two – required a herculean effort from teams across the business, including our Design team. Asli Ozpehlivan Gungor played a crucial role mapping the customer’s journey from start to finish, bringing together customer-facing teams across the business to make sure the new products created a positive experience for business customers – particularly those banking with us for the first time.

As a result of these efforts, we were able to provide over £1 billion of Bounce Back Loans within the first 24 hours of launch – driven by people like Asli who played their part in bringing teams together and putting our customer first.

Emmanuel Owusu-Ansah

Bank of Scotland, Edinburgh

Zoubida A Radi

Lloyds branch, London

London is known for being a melting pot of cultures and communities – something Zoubida Radi is face-to-face with every day in our Lloyds Oxford Street branch.

When the pandemic led to widespread travel disruption – some families having to return home, others having to stay longer than expected in the UK – our Oxford Street branch saw a marked increase in international customers seeking support with their banking. This meant a variety of backgrounds and cultures coming into our branch – and Zoubida played an outstanding role in meeting them with friendliness, patience, and flexibility, in particular helping those with little knowledge of the English language to access the services they needed.

Iain McQueen

Bank of Scotland branch, Dumfries

Ayaz Hussain

Halifax branch, Preston

Ramadan is a period of fasting and reflection for Muslims around the world – but it’s also a time of generosity.

When the pandemic put a halt on usual workplace fundraising activities, Ayaz took the opportunity of Ramadan to mobilise the full fundraising efforts of his team. Together they raised over £5,000 – notwithstanding matched funding from the Group – in support of a charity that supports orphans in the Kashmir region.

Ayaz has also played a leading role in raising awareness about Ramadan amongst colleagues at his Halifax branch and volunteers for the Salvation Army to support homeless people in his local community.

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