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Palatine Bank

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Martins Bank’s Branch at Brook’s Bar has had an amazing life: Since its establishment by the Palatine Bank in 1904, the times, the people, and the surroundings may have changed beyond recognition, but the building itself remains looking pretty much the same - albeit under new ownership. We have various features from Martins Bank Magazine and Four Centuries of Banking to illustrate our Page for Brooks’s Bar; one of Martins Bank’s strengths is its establishment of regional boards of directors, enabling the bank to take a local view, and increase or vary its business accordingly...

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In Service: 1904 until 23 February 1979

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1950 s Brooks's Bar Exterior Barclays Group Archive Actual Date unknown.jpg 

Image: © Barclays Ref 0030/1799/0002


Palatine Bank KnightThis is influenced in no small part by some of the banks, that have been subsumed by Martins as a condition of merging. As the Palatine Bank had been established to try and break away from the idea that all banks would be controlled from London, this ethos is continued both through Martins regional boards, and of course the maintenance of a Head Office in Liverpool. The Palatine amalgamates with The Bank of Liverpool and Martins in 1919.

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Liverpool and Manchester – The Palatine Bank

As the youngest Manchester bank, the Palatine bank had to face keen competition and to pioneer in order to attract deposits. The Daily Dispatch of 16 November 1904 reported that it had pioneered the collection of small savings. When it opened its Brooks’s Bar branch on 1 November 1904, a circular was issued inviting the deposit of small savings on which interest would be allowed…


Right: The Knight Palatinate, symbol of the Palatine Bank


Dr George Chandler. © MARTINS BANK LIMITED 1968.

From bullet Holes to betting shop…

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MBM Autumn 67Brooks’s Bar branch is a high, handsome office, and the window pane with the two bullet holes (‘just some local fracas’) will now have been replaced. Here, personal service and attention have held and expanded a healthy business in an area which is not at all what it used to be. The fine old houses of the former gentry have become clubs, flats and crumbling dwellings for the mixed population stretching into a sprawl of terraced streets which spreads to the east and south until halted by Alexandra Park.

In the 1940s – the Bank was still going to extremes to help ordinary people make the most of their small savings. Nowadays there are only small savings, large bets, and a new life for Brooks’s Bar Branch, as the local betting shop.

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Image: © Martins Bank Archive Collections

Image: © Google® Maps UK

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1950 01 MBM.jpg1945 to 1956 Mr E Brown Manager MBM-Sp56P50.jpgAt the end of the year Mr. Edmund Brown retired after over 43 years' service which commenced in the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank and took him via Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Manchester City Office and Altrincham, where he became Pro Manager in 1935 to Plymouth branch, which he opened as Manager in 1939. In 1941 he was appointed Acting Manager at Brooks's Bar and became Manager there in 1945. On December 29TH a ceremony was held at his branch at which Mr. Harold Blundell, Manager of Manchester City Office, made the presentation on behalf of subscribers of a silver salver on which was inscribed:— " From the members of his staff and his many friends in the service." Mrs. Brown was, unfortunately, unable to attend, but on her behalf Mr. Brown received a beautiful small French four-column clock. It had been Mr. Brown's wish to slip away quietly but such is the regard in which he is held in the Manchester District that it was felt that this could not be allowed and in his kind and humorous manner Mr. Blundell made special reference to three of Mr. Brown's outstanding attributes—his courtesy, civility and loyalty, gifts which had endeared him not only to his colleagues but to his customers and everyone with whom he had come into contact. In his reply Mr. Brown expressed his extreme pleasure that his wife had been included in the gift and was quite over­whelmed at the magnificence of his own gift. On the following evening he entertained his friends, and over 50 members of the staff in the Manchester District were present to wish him well in the days to come.

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1915 Mr H Gresty joined the bank here MBM-Wi63P53.jpg

1920 to 1927 Mr F Hurst MBM-Au49P19.jpg

1924 to 1925 Mr C S Boden MBM-Au57P56.jpg

1924 to 1946 Mr J D Tomkys MBM-Au49P55.jpg

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Mr W W Hall


1912 to 1919

Mr H Gresty

Joined the bank here


Mr W Watson

Joined the Bank Here


Mr F Hurst

On the Staff

1920 to 1927

Mr C S Boden

On the Staff

1924 to 1931

Mr J D Tomkys

On the Staff

1924 to 1946

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1928 to 1934 Mr W S Johnson Manager from 1931 MBM-Su48P06.jpg

1934 to 1945 Mr A Beardwell Manager MBM-Wi57P50.jpg

1945 to 1956 Mr E Brown Manager MBM-Sp56P50.jpg

1946 to 1948 Mr E H Priestly Accountant MBM-Sp53P16.jpg

1956 to 1958 Mr F Whewell Manager MBM-Su68P50.jpg

1958 to 1968 Mr H Lister Manager MBM-Au68P54.jpg

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Mr W S Johnson

On the Staff from 1924

Manager 1931 to 1934

Mr A Beardwell


1934 to 1941

Mr E Brown

Acting Manager 1941-45

Manager 1945 to 1956

Mr E H Priestley


1946 to 1948

Mr F Whewell


1956 to 1958

Mr H Lister


1958 to 1968

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1963 onwards Mr G Dyson - MBM-Au67P22

1965 Miss J B O'Connor Joined Here - MBM-Au67P22

1965 onwards Mr M Palmer - MBM-Au67P22

1966 Miss L B Colton joined Here - MBM-Au67P22

1966 onwards Mr N J P Scott - MBM-Au67P22

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Mr G K Dyson

On the Staff

1963 Onwards

Miss J B O’Connor

Joined the Bank Here


Mr M Palmer

On the Staff

1965 onwards

Miss L B Colton

Joined the Bank Here


Mr N J P Scott

On the Staff

1966 onwards

Mr A R Higgs

Joined the bank Here


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1966 to 1966 Miss W McLoughlin joined here and 1967 to 1968 on staff - MBM-Au67P22

1967 to 1968 Miss V C Bailey Joined Here - MBM-Au67P22

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Miss W McLoughlin

Joined Here 1966-66

On Staff 1967 onwards

Miss V C Bailey

Joined the Bank Here

1967 to 1968

Mr F Sharples


1968 onwards





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Index Number and District:

Opening Hours:





11-27-20 Manchester Brooks’s Bar

Main Branch

175 Chorlton Road Manchester 16

501 Manchester

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

061 226 2586

Nightsafe Installed

F Sharples Manager

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Manchester Birchfields


30 December 1919

3 January 1928

15 December 1969

23 February 1979

Opened by the Palatine Bank

Bank of Liverpool and Martins

Martins Bank Limited

Barclays Bank Limited 20-54-54 Manchester Brooks’s Bar


Manchester Brown Street

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