kent reliance

Introducing our Kent Football Show partner - Kent Reliance

Get to know more about the sponsor of our Kent Football Show.

We are thrilled to have once again joined in partnership with Kent Reliance, a leading savings provider with branches located within the southeast, that will elevate The Kent Football Show to new heights.

For over 150 years, Kent Reliance has been synonymous with the county of Kent and as a passionate supporter of its local communities, and they also understand the power of football to do good, as evidenced by their existing partnership with XL Academy.

We caught up with Louise Halliwell, Group Savings Director, Kent Reliance (part of the OSB Group) to find out more about them.

For those who don’t know much about Kent Reliance, can you tell us more about the business?

“Kent Reliance is an award-winning savings provider offering straightforward savings accounts to UK savers and has nine branches in the South-East of England. Kent Reliance is part of the OSB Group, a specialist lending and retail savings business with offices in Chatham.”

How long has Kent Reliance been around?

“We have a long history of providing a safe home for people’s savings, reaching back to the 1840s, albeit starting with a different name. After a few mergers with other local building societies, Kent Reliance was officially founded in 1898 (a year after Queen Victoria’s Jubilee) as the Chatham & District Reliance Building Society. 

“It was set up by 12 local businessmen (including a solicitor, an architect, a surveyor, 2 accountants, 2 chemists, a draper and a corn merchant) and they also formed the original Board – a little different to today’s set up.”

You are the Kent FA’s Kent Football Show sponsor – why did Kent Reliance wish to get involved in this initiative?

“We are passionate supporters of our local communities – those in which our customers and our colleagues live. We’ve been sponsoring XL@Football since 2021, a female-only football academy with the mission to provide the same support to the female game as the men get, during which time we’ve discovered just how much the game means to people. So, when we saw how passionate Kent FA is to develop the game across the county and all the incredible ways they are endeavouring to make the game accessible to everyone from all ages and backgrounds, we were eager to help them achieve their goal, and the Football Show is a great way to spread the word for many local clubs.”

Kent Reliance has a long-standing relationship with the Kent football community having previously supported Kent County Cups and local grassroots teams. What is it about football that appeals to Kent Reliance so much?

“Football, as with any sport, is identifiable with teamwork, dedication, endurance, and quality – the same things we identify in our colleagues, both present and in the future with those we’d love to attract and join us. It also aligns with our customers’ and potential customers’ priorities and motivations with a personal and emotional relevance, connecting with people through something they care about; something they’ve already decided is important enough to invest their time, their money, and their heart. And this allows us to engage with our local communities and be a part of their story.”

Kent Reliance is passionate about supporting the community in which you operate. Can you tell us more about your work in this area? 

“There are many organisations and causes that have received support through applications made by our colleagues to our Good Causes Fund, and we are passionate in doing everything we can to give back to those who are doing such great work but perhaps operate under the radar. As we’ve mentioned above, our partnership with XL@Football is extremely important as it’s developing young players both on and off the pitch – and we’ve tapped into this by gifting the valuable front-of-shirt space to Demelza, another of our important partners.

“Demelza is a children’s hospice providing end-of-life care for children and support for their families. Putting Demelza on XL’s shirts rather than our own name is important to us, as it brings different elements of our communities together, with each of us supporting the others. Players have demonstrated their community spirit and volunteered at many fundraising events, and each year organise a collection of Christmas gifts for the children, delivering them by hand to the hospice.

“In response to the economic climate, the Kent Reliance Scholarship was launched in 2022 with XL to support young people facing financial barriers that can limit their capacity to take part in sports. This is where the scholarship comes in, offering places to those who are financially vulnerable but also helping highly talented players to develop to their maximum potential. 

“Our new partnership with Kent FA builds on these strong foundations, and we’re excited to work together to help Kent FA build strong, inclusive communities, improve health and well-being and drive gender quality across the county – something we’re also passionate about.”

Can you tell us something that not many people may know about Kent Reliance?

“During WWII, a bomb was landed on Reliance House (our HQ at the time) during an air raid in August 1940. Had it not been for the quick-thinking actions of members of staff who alerted the Home Guard and who bravely extinguished the fire with minimal damage, perhaps there wouldn’t have been a Kent Reliance today. Without different members of the local community working together, we may have missed out on supporting all of the great local initiatives and making a difference.”

The 2023/24 season is now approaching its final stages. What have you enjoyed about this season, and what are you looking forward to in the last few weeks?

“The continued development of football across the country as new training techniques and styles of play are being adopted at every level in both the female and male games. Watching how under-8s play recently was a real eye-opener – such great skill was evident alongside their obvious passion for the game. At the top of the men’s football tree, it’s fantastic to see how a new coach can bring different ideas and suddenly change the style and ultimately success of a team – Aston Villa are a case in point in how this is working. Hopefully, Villa, Newcastle, and others can change the status quo and make things interesting. In the women’s game, it was wonderful to see a second Lioness win the BBC Sports Personality of the Year and a goalkeeper to boot. The continual growth of the female game is fantastic, and we hope to see more (but then we would say that, wouldn’t we).”

To find out more about Kent Reliance, head over to

If you would like to find out more about Kent FA's partnerships, please contact Claire Whybrew, Head of Marketing and Partnerships on