Getting into the habit of saving is child’s play say pupils at a Radnorshire school, who have set up an innovative bank to help students learn to manage their money.

Ysgol Trefonnen in Llandrindod Wells has teamed up with the Builth Wells based Red Kite Credit Union to provide the Hadau Onnen Trefonnen Piggy Bankers scheme, which has been running for 12 months.

The school approached the credit union around a year ago about setting up the bank, which operates every Friday morning before school during term time, and has seen the number of regular savers grow month by month.

Ryan Coleman, the school’s Community Manager, said: "One of the things we realised is that many of our families may well be finding they’re living on credit – or the most expensive forms of credit – so what we’re hoping to do is help our children understand the role of money and the process of saving for things.

“Research shows that by the time a child is seven or eight their attitude to money and spending can be set so what we are hoping to do with our friends from Red Kite is to encourage our children to learn the habit of regular saving.”

David Anderson, the chair of the Red Kite Credit Union, said pupils came up with the name and designed the logo for it's saving booklets and posters.

“There’s no minimum deposit, it could be 50p or even less, but it’s the idea of coming in regularly and adding to the balance that we want to encourage," he said.

“There’s a regular influx of new savers , we currently have 32. In total, since we began a year ago, around £1,000 has been saved, which averages about £100 a month.

The school has been keen to promote its bank and events have included a ‘pizza pig-out’, when one of the directors of the credit union, whose child attends Trefonnen, brought along his wood-fired oven to cook the pizzas. Craft activities were also run as part of the event by representatives from the Friends of Trefonnen School.

The bank has been such a success that Red Kite Credit Union is now in discussions with a second school, and it’s something Ysgol Trefonnen is keen to recommend.

“We’ve had great feedback,” Ryan said. “The kids who come along like the idea of coming up to the counter and parents who are involved think it’s fantastic, they like the link to the school and the curriculum.

"A number of parents, staff and others connected to the school have opened accounts as well, and we’re thinking of using the school as a service point for Red Kite for the wider community.

“As a community-focused school we’re very lucky to have the opportunity to do this but I think that any school, if you’ve got two or three committed volunteers, could do this. And it would benefit the school and the parents of that community.”