Remembering the Church River Credit Union
By: Anthony William Jeremiah McLean “t-Tone”
A few years ago, on a crisp fall day, I went out for an afternoon drive down to a little community on the outskirts of Miramichi, know as Church River, which is situated towards the Burnt Church Community / Esgenoôpetitj 1st Nation.
This wasn’t just a drive to take in the fall scenery, but the person I was travelling with was heading to the Church River Credit Union.
For as long as I remember, the only banks I thought were close by were the Caissie Populaire Acadiennes (now UNI Financial Cooperations) in Néguac and the surrounding areas along the Acadian Peninsula and so on.
But this wasn’t like your everyday bank you see in the city, town or village, or wherever you may live. This bank was a tiny little building, no bigger than your average shed or baby barn and was located at 305 Burnt Church Road.
It had no bank cards, no cheques, no automated teller machines, but the simple convenience of just going in and out. What it lacked in modern day technology, it made up for with personalized service.
Even it’s hours were varied, with some days open till 8 o’clock at night. Like all Credit Unions, they held annual member meetings too. It served many people from near and far, and it closed it’s doors in December 2019 after many years of service.
I have been told as well, it was known as the smallest Credit Union in Canada. I only got their the once, but as I look back on this, it was a memory I thoroughly enjoyed.
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