Branches of Northern Rock were besieged by savers yesterday as fears grew in the City that the Bank of England rescue package for Britain's fifth-biggest mortgage lender could herald a slide in house prices and further financial collapses.More - Online savers struggle to access Northern Rock accounts
Amid news that property prices were already falling sharply before the Bank's first use of its lender-of-last-resort facility in more than 30 years, the Newcastle-based Northern Rock was forced to keep branches open late to allow savers access to their money. By last night it was reported a total of £1bn had been withdrawn.
As thousands of customers queued up outside branches in a bid to get their money, many more were trying to log on to Northern Rock's website - some as early as 5am - in a desperate bid to retrieve their savings.ADDED - American Home Mortgage checks bouncing in Baltimore.
As soon as news of the bank's problem broke last night, customers with E-savings - accounts that pay higher interest rates but can only be accessed online - were trying to log on to withdraw their money.