Martins Bank’s Branch at Market Place Dewsbury is an original branch of the West Riding Union Bank Limited, registered in 1881, subsumed by the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank in 1902, which in turn merges with the Bank of Liverpool and Martins in 1928.

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The branch is pictured here, circa 1967, and the first of our three features comes from Martins Bank Magazine’s 1959 visit to the branch. There is a further (shorter) visit in 1966, along with a brief mention of the citizenship activities of one of the members of the Branch Staff, Cynthia Bottomley…


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In Service: opened 1818 and still in service

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1967 Dewsbury Branch Exterior Close Up Bamforth & Co Postcard.jpg

Image © Bamforth & Co Ltd, Holmfirth Yorks and successors, ca. 1967

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1959 03 MBM.jpgWho but the locals would ever have thought to find the last resting place of Robin Hood near Mirfield in the West Riding? Or, for that matter, how many viewers of Robin Hood on television realise that Sherwood Forest covered parts of Notts, Derbyshire and Yorkshire ? Well, there it is, in Kirklees Park, not far from the Brontë country, and the ancient grave is surmounted by a stone with an inscription which reads (in modern English) as follows:


Here, underneath this little stone, Lies Robert, Earl of Huntingdon.

Never archer as he so good, And people called him Robin Hood.

Such outlaws as he and his men, Will England never see again.

                                                                                                                        Died 24th December, 1247


Dewsbury's main concern, however, is with the rag and shoddy section of the woollen trade. Despite the changing fortunes of the industry there is still a living to be made out of wool and our branch in Dewsbury maintains a staff of sixteen. The town looks very old and, in fact, there is almost no modern building in it, except of a residential character. The mills are in the streets, just as are the warehouses in a city like Liverpool, and one's first impression is of a forest of ugly chimneys. There is a difference, nowadays, in that the chimneys are not permitted to belch smoke indiscriminately. There are certain permitted hours and on the day of our visit, August 6th, there was hardly a curl of smoke to be seen, so that at first we thought the town must be on holiday and the mills closed. What a pity they didn't get round to this clean air idea years ago!

Dewsbury branch (left to right):

H S Bottomley Miss M Milnes

P Mallinson W Hampshire

(Sub-Manager] B Sykes

Mrs M Stewart Mr G K Dyson (Manager)

C Mitchell Miss M Sykes

R G Overend (Accountant)

J Hickling Miss C M Richardson

D Lockwood Miss H M Bairstow

P G Bruce Miss M W Gladman

and H Robinson.

Miss Pollard was on holiday at the time the photograph was taken and so also was Mr Tomlinson.

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Mr. G. K. Dyson, the Manager, met us at the station and we were very delighted to renew a friendship which began in 1950 when we met him and his wife in Peel branch which we were visiting for a similar purpose. Since then we have met at various Manchester District social functions and his son, Derek, is now on his second year with one of the mobile branches. This is Mr. Dyson's fourth managership, his previous branches being Bramhall, Mirfield and Sowerby Bridge. He was appointed Manager at Dewsbury in 1953. We walked towards the branch with a certain amount of apprehension, for after visiting some of the new showpieces we were afraid the experience might be somewhat depressing. Our fears were groundless, for to begin with the branch has a very fine site in a commanding position beside the Town Hall. Inside, although the desks and equipment are of another generation, the mahogany of the counter, doors and interior woodwork is very fine. The two doors in the Manager's room are as fine a pair of doors as can be seen anywhere, and are of unusual height and beauty. The office is well proportioned and dignified, and, for an old branch, very well maintained.


The building must be about a hundred years old and shortly after the amalgamation with the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank, the Bank of Liverpool's branch a few streets away was closed and the business transferred to the Lancashire and Yorkshire office. The business has a very old foundation, as can be seen from the Bank's Historical Tree, coming in through Ben Wilson and the West Riding Union Banking Co. Ltd. The Sub Manager is Mr. W. Hampshire who, apart from a spell as Pro Manager at Spring Gardens, has spent the whole of his business life at Dewsbury. He was appointed Sub Manager in 1946 and is shortly due to retire. The Accountant is Mr. R. G. Overend who has served at Batley, Cleckheaton, Heckmond-wike, Huddersfield and Mirfield before his appointment to Dewsbury in 1955. There is a strong and very comely team of girls at Dewsbury, six out of a total staff of sixteen, and, as various speakers at staff dinners are fond of saying, they certainly do bring brightness and colour into the branch! The principal cashier, Mr. H. S. Bottomley, has been at Dewsbury for 31 years: records such as this one, under modern conditions, are becoming rarer. Before we left we had the pleasure of making a presentation, on behalf of the subscribers, of a wedding gift to Mr. Brian Sykes, this being the first time in 14 years that anything like that has happened to us when visiting a branch. It was a most happy occasion, a most happy visit, and the family spirit was noticeably predominant at this extremely well run branch.


1960 s Dewsbury Interior 2 BGA Ref 30-825-5

Dewsbury Branch Interior - pictured in 1938

Image © Barclays Ref 0030/0825/0005


1960 s Dewsbury Interior 2 BGA Ref 30-825-5

1966 - The new interior of Dewsbury Branch

Images © Barclays Ref 0030/0825/0005


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In the picture…


1968 02 MBM.jpgDewsbury branch occupies an excellent site attractively rebuilt internally two years ago to make the best use of the available space, though there is precious little for future expansion. The business dates back to Hagues Cook and Wormald in 1818 and for a long time the town was the centre of the Rag Trade. Only a war can revive the heavy woollen industry so today engineering, plastics, carpet yarns and blankets occupy this booming town. Mr Faragher, having been through the modernisation of Bury Branch, was well able to supervise Dewsbury’s conversion which met with an excellent response from customers and staff. For those who wonder whether our Bank has now become a young man’s bank, we found here only Mr Bottomley, the first cashier, over 50 years of age…

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B Halmshaw (Pro Manager)

H S Bottomley

F Jones


R G A Sanderson

M R Alderson

E A Speight  J G Fearnley


K Nicholls Miss P Roebuck

Miss C Bottomley Miss P Scargill

Mrs K E Turner Miss L P Brook E K Norgate


Miss J Richardson Miss C M Lockwood D M Pollard (Deputy Manager) H D Faragher (Manager) Miss M Sykes Miss M J Worsnop

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(Absent: Miss E M Broadhead P Mallinson)

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The staff of Martins Bank have traditionally spent their leisure time pursuing hobbies or sporting activities, perhaps treading the boards in an acting singing or dancing capacity.  Some, like Cynthia Bottomley of Dewsbury Branch engage in public service and are rewarded for their commitment and effort…

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A “Prior”


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Miss Cynthia Bottomley of our Dewsbury Branch was honoured by the St John Ambulance Brigade when she was presented with the Grand Prior Badge, the brigade’s highest award in the cadet section.

4 Image © Barclays Ref 0030/0825/0005

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Not a lot of difference to be seen here, apart from the name above the door – in 1922 on the left, Dewsbury is a Branch of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank. Then on the right, in 1938, as a Branch of Martins Bank…


Image © Martins Bank Archive Collections - W N Townson Bequest

Image © Barclays Ref 0030/0825/0005

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1923 Mr H Lambert joined the bank here MBM-Au66P47.jpg

1923 to 1955 Mr S Wilson MBM-Au66P51.jpg

1924 to 1936 Mr L Atkins joined the bank here MBM-Wi68P55.jpg

1930 to 1935 Mr W A Taylor Sub Manager MBM-Sp49P21.jpg

1937 to 1954 Mr I Binns MBM-Wi60P54.jpg

1938 to 1946 Mr F A A Beresford Sub Manager MBM-Au61P50.jpg

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Mr H Lambert

Joined the Bank Here


Mr S Wilson

On the Staff

1923 to 1955

Mr L Atkins

Joined the bank Here

1924 to 1936

Mr W A Taylor

Sub Manager

1930 to 1935

Mr I Binns

On the Staff

1937 to 1954

Mr F A A Beresford

Sub Manager

1938 to 1946

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1940 to 1942 Mr LG Johnson joined the bank here MBM-Su66P04.jpg

1945 to 1947 joined then from 1965 Mr DM Pollard Deputy Manager MBM-Sp65P05.jpg

1945 to 1949 Mr A Crebtree Manager MBM-Sp49P35.jpg

1946 to 1959 Mr W Hampshire Sub Manager MBM-Wi59P52.jpg

1947 to 1948 Mr R S Beaumont joined the bank here MBM-Su69P15.jpg

1948 Mr V R Norton MBM-Wi63P08.jpg

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Mr L G Johnson

Joined the Bank Here

1940 to 1942

Mr D M Pollard

Joined Here 1945-47

Deputy Manager 1965.

Mr A Crabtree


1945 to 1949

Mr W Hampshire

Sub Manager

1946 to 1959

Mr R S Beaumont

Joined the Bank Here

1947 to 1948

Mr V R Norton

On the Staff


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1949 to 1953 Mr S M Lee Manager MBM-Wi60P56.jpg

1950 to 1951 Mr C Mitchell joined the bank here MBM-Su66P03.jpg

1953 to 1961 Mr G K Dyson Manager MBM-Sp61P51.jpg

1955 to 1965 Mr M Flint joined the bank here MBM-Su69P14.jpg

1959 to 1965 Mr R G Overend Deputy Manager MBM-Sp65P58.jpg

1959 to 1966 Mr B Halmshaw Pro Manager MBM-Au66P06.jpg

Mr S M Lee


1949 to 1953

Mr C Mitchell

Joined the Bank Here

1950 to 1951

Mr K G Dyson


1953 to 1961

Mr M Flint

Joined the Bank Here

1955 to 1965

Mr R G Overend

Deputy Manager

1959 to 1965

Mr B Halmshaw

Pro Manager

1959 to 1965

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1966 to 1968 Mr R Williamson Assistant Manager MBM-Au66P03.jpg

1966 to 1969 Mr G Chadwick pro Manager MBM-Au66P05.jpg

1968 Cynthia Bottomley (article - St John's Honour) MBM-Su68P45.jpg

1968 Mr PM Houldsworth Assistant Manager MBM-Wi68P06.jpg

1968 Stuart Bremner MBM-Wi68P32.jpg

1969 Mr J G Crossley Pro Manager MBM-Sp69P09.jpg

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Mr R Williams

Assistant Manager

1966 to 1968

Mr G Chadwick

Pro Manager

1966 to 1969

Miss Cynthia Bottomley

On the Staff


Mr P M Houldsworth

Assistant Manager


Mr Stuart Bremner

On the Staff


Mr J G Crossley

Pro Manager


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2 Branches






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Index Number and District:






11-35-30 Dewsbury

Full Branch

PO Box No 3 Market Place Dewsbury Yorkshire

728 Manchester

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0930-1100

Dewsbury 2451

Nightsafe Installed

Mr H D Faragher Manager


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Circa 1822

15 July 1902

3 January 1928

15 December 1969


Opened by Messrs Hagues Cook and Wormald

West Riding Union Bank

Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank

Martins Bank Limited

Barclays Bank Limited 20-26-08 Dewsbury Market Place

Still open as Barclays Crackenedge Lane

Dewsbury Westgate

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