Quakers believe that faith is a personal matter and that everyone possesses their own Inner Light, which allows them direct communication with God through silent contemplation.
Their rejection of the role of the clergy and the ritual of the church challenged the established authority of the Church of England and led to their exclusion from university and certain professions.
As a consequence they tended to enter the trades, most notably (like the Peckovers) banking, shop keeping, farming and manufacturing and to favour business deals with fellow Quakers.
Barclays Bank, Rowntrees and Cadburys were all originally Quaker enterprises.
Quakers also inter-married, for marriage to a non-Quaker meant expulsion from the faith until 1869.
They became a tight-knit community, with a strong moral code and deep religious beliefs which coloured all their dealings.
This is most probably why the Peckovers were successful in their banking enterprises in Wisbech, while other provincial banks went under.
To find out more about Quakersim and the work Quakers are doing today, visit their website www.quaker.org.uk