Santander lending up £4bn

The figures also revealed that the bank’s gross residential mortgage lending totalled £18.4bn.

Ana Botín, chief executive officer, said: “The UK economic recovery is strengthening, although uncertainties remain in the banking environment for the year ahead.

“We will continue to support our customers and the broader economy, our intention is to grow both our commercial and retail lending in 2014. We remain confident that we will deliver on our key commitments for the end of 2015.”

Commercial banking lending also increased by 13%, with £4.1bn of new facilities extended to SMEs.

Santander, who revealed they expect further increase in net mortgage loans in the year ahead, provided £3.4bn mortgages to first-time buyers in 2013.

The Bank had general profits of £921m before tax, and increase of 5% from 2012.