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Martin's Private Bank

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Mottingham is one of the fifteen branches of Martin’s Private Bank that amalgamate with the Bank of Liverpool in 1918.  When our Mottingham page was first posted to the web site, we had little information about the branch, and a rather old image that did not do justice to the building.  Now, thanks to former Martins Manager Philip Lewis and images and information from Barclays’ own records, we can right both those wrongs – Philip has come up trumps with two beautiful images of the branch, and a short piece summing up the day to day business that took place there. 

 

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Mottingham SE9 – July 1964 (1) Image © Philip Lewis

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Then we look at the effects of war on Mottingham Branch, which shows the logistics of trying to trade and serve the public in premises that are targetted not once, but twice by the enemy…

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1964 to 1968 Mr P J Lewis Manager MBM-Su64P07.jpgI was a not only a staff member at Mottingham SE9, but also the Manager from 1964 to 1968.  Mottingham was one of the original Martins Bank North Kent branches. The branch which was on an imposing corner site had a full size golden grasshopper over the front entrance. It was a busy, if small suburban branch which was there to bring in the credit balances which it did. The business was largely personal and small businesses. In 1967 the branch which then had no counter screens had the unenviable distinction of being the first Martins branch to endure an armed raid which used a van backed up to the corner front entrance.

P J Lewis, January 2011

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1953 June London Mottingham Exterior Geoff Taylor.jpg

Image © Geoff Taylor Collection

1964 Branch Exterior (1) PJ Lewis.jpg 

Mottingham SE9 – July 1964 (2) Image © Philip Lewis

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This wonderfully evocative image (above, left) of Mottingham branch is taken one snowy day in 1954.  Geoff Taylor is member of Martins Staff whose love of collecting Martins Branch photos has turned up gold dust for us some sixty years on.  It is easy to forget that these are not simply pictures of bank branches, they are also extremely important pieces of our social history, and these children outside  Martins Branch are no exception!  We are grateful both to Geoff and to Philip Lewis for their permission to let us show these photographs. Whilst people, cars and shop fronts don’t always take centre stage in these pictures, they still provide a fascinating glimpse into the everyday life going on around  Martins Branches.  Before we look at Mottingham’s fortunes during World War II, we have a selection of photographs of the Branch interior from the 1950s…

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Images © Barclays Ref 30-1941

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Mottingham at War…

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The history of Martins Bank Mottingham is a little strange:

 

·         The Branch starts life around 1912/13 at number 3, Moor Mead.

·         A few years later business moves to Haldon House, West Park, Mottingham

·         In 1937 this address is re-designated 29 Mottingham Road – the branch we see in the pictures above

 

But in World War II, a few more changes of address are forced upon Mottingham, and our good friends at Barclays Group Archive have unearthed the following information for us.

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MAW Up BannerMinutes of the Standing Committee of Martins Bank

 

19/06/1944

 

The Chief General Manager reported that a considerable number of pilotless planes had been sent over by the Germans during the weekend. Our Mottingham branch had had the roof blown off….

 

26/06/1944

 

The Chief General Manager reported that pilotless planes had been active over the weekend….Mottingham premises had been hit again, this time seriously, and would probably not be safe for the continuation of our business there. Temporary premises were being sought.’

 

12/07/1944

 

The Chief General Manager reported that there had been further flying bombs over London last night. The new temporary premises which we had taken at Mottingham had been hit, and our opening there will have to be deferred.’

 

16/07/1946

 

Mottingham suffered severe air raid damage in 1944 and we have since been conducting our business in temporary quarters.

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Martins’ Premises Ledgers reveal more about Mottingham’s various incarnations - Barclays Group Archives again: -

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1964 Branch Exterior (2) PJ Lewis.jpgThe premises ledger does in fact contain entries for war damage repairs at Mottingham from April 1943 through to December 1944, and again in July 1946 for ‘reinstatement to former condition after damage by enemy action’ [ref. 1167/20], continuing until 1949. The title register tells us that in 1937 the address was formalised as 29, Mottingham Road (the address given on the branch card for the 1950s and 60s), prior to which it had been known as ‘Haldon House, West Park, Mottingham, Kent’ (ref 622/2). We also have two leases dated 1917 and 1920 (ref 9/944), which describe the premises as a ‘small lock-up shop’, being part of ‘Halden House’ (sic). However, prior to that Martins had occupied premises at ‘3, Moor Mead, Mottingham’ which were fitted up and licensed for banking in 1912/13 and given up some time after 1917 (ref 9/949), so this must have been the first premises, as the 1912 Bankers’ Almanac doesn’t list a Martins office there but the 1914 Report does.

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In our own records, a Head Office Circular from 20 July 1944 indicates that the temporary address for Mottingham is to be “282 Court Road Mottingham until further notice”.

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1939 to 1941 Mr A L Kirk Pro Manager MBM-Au65P58.jpg

1950 to 1954 Mr F E Gillham MBM-Wi64P05.jpg

1952 to 1953 Mr D A Wright joined the bank here MBM-Sp69P10.jpg

1957 to 1964 Mr H C Bradwell Manager MBM-Su64P04.jpg

1964 to 1968 Mr P J Lewis Manager MBM-Su64P07.jpg

1965 Peter Scrivens joined the bank here MBM-Su68P09.jpg

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Mr A L Kirk

Pro Manager

1939 to 1941

Mr F E Gilham

On the Staff

1950 to 1954

Mr D A Wright

Joined the Bank Here

1952 to 1953

Mr H C Bradwell

Manager

1957 to 1964

Mr P J Lewis

Manager

1964 to 1968

Mr Peter Scrivens

Joined the Bank Here

1965

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1966 Ruth Gilmer Cashier MBM-Wi66P42.jpg

1968 Mr GL Taylor Manager MBM-Au68P07.jpg

BW Logo

BW Logo

BW Logo

BW Logo

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Miss Ruth Gilmer

Cashier

1966

Mr G L Taylor

Manager

1968 onwards

 

 

 

 

 

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Title:

Type:

Address:

Index Number and District:

Hours:

 

Telephone:

Services:

Manager:

11-20-60 London Mottingham SE9

Full Branch

29 Mottingham Road London SE9

423 London

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

01 857 1281

Night Safe

Mr G L Taylor Manager

Pre 1918

18 December 1918

3 January 1928

July 1944

1948

15 December 1969

10 april 1992

Currently

Martin’s Private Bank

Bank of Liverpool and Martins Limited

Martins Bank Limited

Partially bombed – moved to 282 Court Road

Moved Back to 29 Mottingham Road

Barclays Bank Limited 20-58-26 Mottingham 29 Mottingham Road

Closed

Nursing Home

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