Former Northern Rock treasurer, 56, who 'fell into depression after
bank collapsed' is found dead at his home
Keith Currie died on Sunday at his home in Jesmond, Newcastle
Friends say he 'felt terrible' after the bank's demise in 2007
He had taken early retirement with £2.5million in bonuses
By MARTIN ROBINSON
PUBLISHED: 13:02 EDT, 26 November 2012 | UPDATED: 14:26 EDT, 26
Found dead: Keith Currie, former treasurer of Northern Rock died on
Sunday and friends say he never recovered from the bank's collapse
Found dead: Keith Currie, former treasurer of Northern Rock, died on
The former treasurer of Northern Rock has been found dead at his
home after it is believed he spiralled into depression over his role
in the bank’s collapse.
Keith Currie, 56, stepped down just two months after the bank went
bust in 2007 and later retired with a reported £2.5million payout.
Friends say he was haunted by the bank’s collapse and could not
forgive himself for failing to ensure the business had enough
financing to survive.
It is believed he became a recluse and began drinking.
He also suffered a marriage collapse earlier this year.
Police today confirmed the father-of-one had been found dead at his
home in Jesmond, Newcastle, at around 3pm on Sunday.
A close friend, who asked not to be named, said Mr Currie felt
'terrible' about ordinary people losing their money.
He said: 'He was a very charitable chap. He was just a really nice,
very happy-go-lucky sort of guy.
'When Northern Rock went down he became quite reclusive. He did not
go out. He was a guy with a conscience.
'He felt terrible about customers and shareholders losing their
The friend added: 'He started to fall into depression'.
Mr Currie was appointed treasury manager of Northern Rock in January
2005 and played a key role in ensuring the bank had enough
But just a month after Northern Rock crashed in September 2007 Mr
Currie was notably absent from work for two weeks, citing stress.
He stepped down as a board director in November 2007 and took early
retirement in January 2008 - after pocketing a reported £2.5million
in bonus pay-outs.
Northern Rock’s shares collapsed after it was forced to seek
emergency funding from the Bank of England.
Concerned customers rushed to withdraw their money and the share
price plunged 30 per cent.
Mr Currie was criticised along with other executives for selling
shares in the bank months before its financial crisis.
Collapse: The fall of Northern Rock shocked Britain and led to a
rush by customers to remove their money from the toxic institution
Collapse: The fall of Northern Rock in 2007 shocked Britain and led
to a rush by customers to remove their money from the toxic
A 2009 Channel 4 Dispatches investigation into banking chiefs’
bonuses found Mr Currie had received payments totalling £2.5million.
The friend added; 'He had everything going for him. He was a nice
bloke, with a good sense of humour.'
'From what I understand one of his friends was trying to get hold of
him and that is when they realised something was wrong,' they added.
A spokesman for Northumbria Police yesterday said: 'At 3.12pm
Northumbria Police received a report from the ambulance service of a
man found dead at his house on Lindisfarne Road in Jesmond.
'The man was in his 50s. The coroner has been informed.'
A post mortem is expected to take place on Wednesday.
Mr Currie is understood to have broken up from his wife Fiona
Currie, 52, earlier this year after ten years of marriage.
He is known to have previously been married and has one son, Angus,
19. A spokesman for Virgin Money today said: 'We are very sad to
hear the news of Keith's passing.'
Northern Rock was caught up in the US sub-prime lending crisis and
was forced to apply to the Bank of England for emergency financial
support in September 2007.
Worried savers queued up around the bank's 76 branches to withdraw
savings - totalling up to £2.5billion - causing the share price to
plunge by 30 per cent.
On September 17, 2007, the then Chancellor Alistair Darling stepped
in and guaranteed all Northern Rock deposits in a bid to restore
confidence in the bank.
Northern Rock executives appeared before a Parliamentary committee
into the crisis October 16, 2007, and three days later chairman Matt
On November 17, 2007, the chief executive Adam Applegarth resigned
along with board directors David Baker, Keith Currie and Andy
Kuipers who stood down but remained as officers.
The Chancellor announced on February 17, 2008, that Northern Rock
would be taken into public ownership.
The bank was later split in two with the 'good' bank being sold to
Virgin Money for £747million on November 17, 2011.
It is estimated the sale saw taxpayers with a 'paper' loss of
between £400million and ££650million.
The comments below have been moderated in advance.
livebetter, Glasgow, United Kingdom, 4 years ago
A banker with a conscience - honourable gentleman.
932Click to rate
Zein, Hove UK, 4 years ago
So sad, it shows how he was an honourable man. RIP
528Click to rate
redtoon, Gateshead, 4 years ago
it was a really really sad day when they went down, they had the
best ever pensioner savings scheme the "Silver Savers" 6.7% instant
access, what wouldent you give for a deal like that these days ?.
414Click to rate
hoodoogirl, Bedfordshire, United Kingdom, 4 years ago
Only three online newspapers have reported his death.. really
317Click to rate
Bob, Bridport, United Kingdom, 4 years ago
Not a single negative comment on here shows that this man was a
decent and respectable human being who genuinely cared for his
investors; part of the old school. RIP Sir.
ev, ireland, 4 years ago
This is so sad. I an so sorry.
anon, anon, 4 years ago
R.I.P Mr Currie! Sorry family for Your loss.
HowOnEarth, Somewhere, 4 years ago
A banker that cared, he understood the consequences that his
position commanded. RIP
sam, manchester, 4 years ago
thoughts are with his family
tulipa8, big-smoke, 4 years ago
Poor guy, I am sure it wasn't his fault alone. Very sad, I hope he
is in peace now.
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