STAFF at Northern Rock’s Newcastle HQ were delighted at the news that the group is to be sold to Virgin Money.
Union rep Brian Cole said workers who had borne the brunt of public anger since the bank’s collapse could now look with hope to the future.
The regional officer for Unite hoped it would be the end of a "tense" few years.
He told how cashiers were spat at during the run on the bank and booed at a Christmas function when it was announced where they were from.
Mr Cole said the union was fighting to save 300 jobs hanging in the balance and wanted assurances Virgin would invest and create new jobs.
He said: "We heard the news at about 9.30am and we are over the moon. The union reps on site think it is the best possible outcome.
"The fact the business is staying here and not just that, but that Gosforth is going to be the hub, is fantastic.
"It is marvellous that a national company has invested in the region. It means people can plan for Christmas and have a little hope after what has been a pretty tense four years."
He said Northern Rock employed many young people and that it was important jobs were found for under-30s within the financial sector.
He said the news was a reward for the bank’s long-suffering staff.
"It was not the fault of the workers here that the recession started," he said.
"There was a lot of bad feeling at the time and they seemed to get the blame. People were spat on in one branch when the run was on.
"I was at a Christmas do where staff did not want to tell the compere they were from Northern Rock because the previous year they had been booed.
"These were not the high-end people making the decisions. It was not their fault."
He praised Chancellor George Osborne’s decision to sell and said: "We want guarantees Virgin will invest and grow the business.
"We don’t expect to get back to the 6,000 staff we had before but we do hope to see more jobs created.
"I think the government has done the right thing to sell the business as a whole.
"Hopefully it will create competition in the market place and we can work hard to bring the company back to where it was."