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Bank of Liverpool and Martins

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Leeds City Office is housed in the same building -  28-30 Park Row -  as Leeds District Office, from where all branches in the District are controlled and monitored.  Leeds is one of the smaller districts because many Yorkshire branches are in other districts. Nevertheless, City Office is as big as its counterparts in Manchester and Newcastle.  Nowadays trading as a five star restaurant and pub, somewhat confusingly, the building is known as Beckett’s Bank, but this is purely in honour of a completely different local bank which in 1921 merged with the London County Westminster and Parr’s Bank.  By 1968, Martins Staff has under its belt, a well established tradition of acting, singing, dancing and generally performing, with a number of operatic and dramatic societies based in around the country  For some, the roar of the greasepaint and the smell of the crowd are all too addictive.  Thus the progression from stage to screen would seem desirable. The small screen will also be soon taken care of with a television commercial for Martins Unicorn. The whereabouts of either the film or the TV commercial would be very welcome, and if you can help, please do get in touch with us  


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Image © Martins Bank Archive Collection

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As for starring on the big screen, it falls to the staff of the Foreign and Securities Department of  Leeds City Office, to show what they are made of, and in this article in Martins Bank Magazine from Winter 1968, we learn that film making is possibly NOT all it is cracked up to be. Our main feature is followed by two shorts, when we look at the retirement celebrations for Mr McGregor in 1961 and Mr Butterley in 1967…


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and all that business

The Scene:   Leeds City Office Foreign and Securities Department

The Time:    A warm spring afternoon

The Cast:    The Staff


J. S. CORKILL, Pro Manager at Leeds City Office, describes the staff's experience when a camera team

invaded the branch to film a sequence for the Banking Information Service's new film 'Bankers to the world'

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1968 04 MBM.jpgpromptly, at the appointed hour, a small army of technicians entered the Bank. They bore what seemed to be sufficient electrical equipment to stage a full-scale epic. Immediately they became busily engaged in the erection of arc lights and the laying of cables in a variety of cunning places. These cables were not the usual domestic type but of a dimension which left the unwary in no doubt at all when they had tripped over one. To clarify some points over which we were still in some doubt (a gross understatement) we approached a rather loud-spoken, cigar-smoking gentleman who, by the number of orders he was issuing to the arc-light brigade, seemed to be in charge. He was amazed that we should consider him responsible for 'the scene', as he put it; no, we must approach The Director. He didn't exactly bow from the waist as he uttered these hallowed words but the message was clearly understood.

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I’m ready for my close up!

The cast on set: At the front desk, Jack Foster and Connie Hooper; rear desk,

Martin Seeber and Jack Corkill. At their typewriters are Maralyn Dalton (left) and Pat Bell

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Spooled.jpgWe therefore approached a tall, well-dressed gentle­man who in curt, crisp tones was obtaining order out of chaos with the cable-laying beavers. He was equally amazed that we should think that he was in overall authority and he bade us wait the arrival of The Director, speaking in the same reverent tone as his cigar-smoking colleague. A few minutes later a slightly-built man with thinning hair entered the department and in a quiet unassuming voice informed us that he was the director and had we any problems. So much for our judgment of film unit personnel. There followed an hour of intense activity on the part of the technicians during which we smiled bravely at normally taciturn customers who suddenly blossomed forth as comedians with witticisms such as 'Will you be on with Elsie Tanner then?': 'You'll get a surprise if its Candid Camera': 'This raid looks better organised than the Great Train Robbery'.

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Stripped.jpgThen we were ready for 'lights' and on they came in quick succession. The immediate impression was not of glare but of roasting heat, and the male cast soon became envious of their lighter-clad girl colleagues. The director was apparently immune to these conditions as he continued giving instructions to Maralyn Dalton, our leading lady, while still wearing his overcoat. To obtain maximum co-operation from the female cast the immediate use of Christian names seemed desirable and the director used this form of address throughout the afternoon without once making an error.


Many dim faces could be seen beyond the ring of lights which had turned the department, partitioned off from the rest of the office, into a real stage set. After a further half-hour of final adjustments the cigar-smoking gentleman—who proved to be the cameraman—an­nounced from his precarious position aloft that all was now in order.  Maralyn, Pat Bell, and the supporting cast received their final briefing from the director who had by this time become a mere mortal by removing his overcoat. We were ready for action.


ClapperboardThe first take was slightly delayed while our Mr Foster mopped his streaming brow. Then the camera rolled. Pre-arranged telephone calls came through on time; even an unexpected call fitted into the hard-at-work action of the department. Minor alterations to furnishing were carried out by members of the now unemployed army and further takes were made, but not before the now almost purple Jack Foster had on each occasion mopped his brow at the request of the director. In fairness to Mr Foster it must be stated that his carefully marked position was in the centre of the scene and he was experiencing the full intensity of every arc light. Suddenly the lights were dimmed and it was all over. Amid the hubbub of congratulations and leave-takings we learnt that the scene—which had taken two-and-a- quarter hours to complete—would run for six seconds! The cast were no longer in any doubt that film-making was a most expensive business. They were also thankful that they were not living in a cannibalistic country where bank clerks, cooked to a turn, are a delicacy.


Projected.jpgThe Banking Information Service describes Bankers to the world as a film about overseas trade, its importance to the economy and the essential service of the banks in helping to finance it. It is not designed to sell, nor is it to induce manu­facturers into the export field; it is informative and educational, aimed at the grass roots of the community to promote better appreciation of the raison d'etre for overseas trade and of the banks' contribution. The film is not technical and will bring out the work of ordinary bank branches as well as of overseas departments. The intended audience includes senior schools, local clubs, townswomen's guilds: pitched at sixth form level of intelligence the film is presented in a lively, fast-moving way. Bankers to the world will be available early next year.

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Interior Images © Barclays



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1961 01 MBMThere was a large gathering at Leeds City Office on November 30th, at which Mr. J. A. McGregor, Assistant District Manager, was present, to mark the retirement of Mr. C. Robinson, who had spent the last fifteen years of his service at the branch as Accountant. Mr. A. B. Hindmarsh, the Manager, in thanking Mr. Robinson for the unfailing reliability of his work, spoke of the high regard in which he was held by all his colleagues, and referred particularly to the help and encouragement he had always given to the younger members of the staff. Mr. E. Hinchcliffe (Manager, Brighouse), added a tribute on behalf of the many former colleagues who were present, and Mr. J. A. Bromley (Chief Cashier, Leeds City Office), who had had the longest association with Mr. Robinson, presented him on behalf of the subscribers with a photographic slide pro­jector, and a box of chocolates for Mrs. Robinson. In reply, Mr. Robinson thanked the many people who had subscribed to the gifts, and stated how happy he had been both in his service, and in the enjoyment of so many friends within the Bank. Mr. Robinson entered the Bank in 1916 at Castleford. He was transferred to Pontefract in 1923 and to Leeds City Office in 1932. In 1943 he joined the Inspection Staff and in 1945 he was appointed Accountant at Leeds City Office.


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1967 03 MBMon July 31 Mr Butterley, Deputy Manager of Leeds City Office since 1952,  retired after 45 years' service. His career began in the North Eastern District where he served in a number of branches before moving to Leeds City Office in 1936 where he remained with the exception of a short spell at Harrogate at the end of the war. At a cocktail party in the Griffin Hotel, Leeds, Mr and Mrs Butterley entertained over 60 members of the staff and former colleagues including Mr P. H. Christie, now 85 years of age, who was manager of Leeds City Office when Mr Butterley came from the North Eastern District. Mr Oldroyd (Manager, Leeds City Office) welcomed the guests and paid tribute to Mr Butterley's loyal service and sterling sup­port to himself and his two predecessors. Mr Lister then presented Mr Butterley with a cheque from past and present colleagues and expressed the good wishes of himself and the general management for the future. Miss Hooper presented Mrs Butterley with a bouquet.

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Looking not quite as scary today as it did in the 1940s, 28-30 Park Row is still a magnificant building.  There are far worse ways for it to be enjoyed than as a pub, and it is this particular change of use that has given new life to so many former Bank buildings…

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Image (1960) Martins Bank Archive

Image © 2013 Dave Baldwin

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1903 to 1919 Mr C H Thomlinson joined the service here MBM-Su47P29.jpg

1920 to 1922 Mr J C Wood MBM-Au56P49.jpg

1929 to 1935  Mr R H Watson joined the bank here MBM-Wi64P06.jpg

1932 to 1936 Mr P Q K Sutcliffe MBM-Wi57P43.jpg

1941 to 1943 Mr G H Wilford joined the bank here MBM-Wi67P05.jpg

1942 to 1946 Miss J U T Nicholson Cashier MBM-Sp47P23.jpg

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Mr C H Thomlinson

Joined the Bank Here

1903  to 1919

Mr J C Wood

On the Staff

1920 to 1922

Mr R H Watson

Joined the Bank Here

1929 to 1935

Mr P Q K Sutcliffe

On the Staff

1932 to 1936

Mr G H Wilford

Joined the Bank Here

1941 to 1943

Miss J U T Nicholson


1942 to 1946

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1945 to 1945 Mr J W Davenport joined the bank here MBM-Su64P03.jpg

1945 to 1961 Mr C Robinson Accountant MBM-Sp61P53.jpg

1952 to 1967 Mr W E Butterley Deputy Manager MBM-Au67P55.jpg

1955 to 1962 Mr A B hindmarsh Manager MBM-Au55P35.jpg

1957 to 1958 Mr R N Weightman MBM-Au64P04.jpg

1962 Mr W Oldroyd Manager MBM-Su62P30.jpg

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Mr J W Davenport

Joined the Bank Here

1942 to 1945

Mr C Robinson


1945 to 1961

Mr W E Butterley

Deputy Manager

1952 to 1967

Mr A B Hindmarsh


1955 to 1962

Mr R N Weightman

On the Staff

1957 to 1958

Mr W Oldroyd


1962 onwards

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1963 Miss D M Johnson Cashier MBM-Au63P25.jpg

1964 Mr JA Bromley Chief Cashier MBM-Su64P26.jpg

1966 Margaret Burdess Accounts MBM-Sp66P47.jpg

1966 Mr R Hillam First Cashier City Office MBM-Au66P42.jpg

1967 Mr IW Alexander Deputy Manager MBM-Au67P06.jpg

1967 Mr JS Corkill pro Manager MBM-AU67P05.jpg

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Miss D M Johnson



Mr J A Bromley

Chief Cashier


Miss Margaret Burdess



Mr R Hillam

First Cashier


Mr I W Alexander

Deputy Manager


Mr J S Corkill

Pro Manager


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Index Number and District:






11-00-50 Leeds City Office

Main Branch

28 and 30 Park Row Leeds 1

606 Leeds

Mon to Fri 1000-1500 

Saturday 0930-1100

Leeds 32525

Nightsafe Installed

Mr W Olroyd VRD Manager

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Sub Branches

11-421 LEEDS 18 PARK ROW





3 January 1928

15 December 1969

10 May 1985


Opened by the Bank of Liverpool and Martins

Martins Bank Limited

Barclays Bank Limited 20-48-47 Leeds, Park Row


Known as “Becketts Bank” a Wetherspoon® Public House

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