As a member of the liberal, metropolitan, media elite there’s nothing I love more than a puzzle to keep my grey matter busy.
I regularly play this game along the lines of: If I spend the rest of my career earning marginally just enough to have student loan payments deducted will I ever not die in the shared house I can barely afford to rent?
The answer is never fun. That novel I’ve been working on the last 10 years is literally my only way out. So let’s look at a less depressing puzzle.
If you’ve ever been told you’re ‘one in a million’, this is the puzzle for you.
Hidden away in this busy high street is one person who almost literally is one in a million – but you can only identify him due to the No1 written on his shirt.
The brainteaser featuring adults through the ages was created by Skipton Building Society to celebrate reaching the million-member mark, having been in business since the 1850s.
When it was established in 1853, Charlotte Bronte was the only surviving Bronte sister, and Vincent Van Gogh had just been born.
The cost to build a typical worker’s terraced home was roughly £75, and rents were around 1/6d a week – about 7.5p in new money.
This represented around 10 per cent of an average weekly household income. In fact, back then most housing was rented, with less than one in 10 people owning their own home.
Skipton spokesman Roy Prenton said:
Much has changed since 1853, with the world undergoing several revolutions in the last century and a half.
In 1854, at the first annual meeting of what was to become Skipton Building Society, we had just 223 members and held £2,951.16s.8d in balances. Forward 164 years and in August we saw the average UK house price at £233,000. Quite a change.
You’re wondering where the guy in the puzzle is hiding, aren’t you. Here you go, kick yourself over this:
One thing that hasn’t changed, however, is Skipton’s purpose – helping people save for the future and achieve their dreams of owning their own homes. We’ve come a long way, and we’re now one of the UK’s largest building societies.
We’ve grown and changed but we’ve always stayed true to our roots. Being there for our members to help them have a better life is still – and always will be – at the heart of what do.
Now, with a million members on the books, people are still looking for the same personal service we were offering over 150 years ago – which we’re happy to provide.
In fact, we want to make every one of our members feel like one in a million.
Where do I sign up?
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Tim Horner is a sub-editor at UNILAD. He graduated with a BA Journalism from University College Falmouth before most his colleagues were born. A previous editor of adult mags, he now enjoys bringing the tone down in the viral news sector.