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Bank of Liverpool

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Chester is an original branch of the Bank of Liverpool, and opens in these fabulously appointed premises at Eastgate Street in 1896.  Surviving all subsequent mergers and changes up to Barclays in 1969, the Branch makes it beyond its one hundredth anniversary, the business being closed and transferred to a nearby Barclays Branch in 2001. The original colour image of Chester Branch that was displayed on this page came to us in 2010 from a Valentine’s Postcard.  It drew a great deal of interest, and since that time several more colour images have come to our attention.

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1950 Chester Exterior (Actual Date Unknown) from Valentine's Postcard PA.jpg

Image (1968) © and courtesy of Tim Cornwell

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Most have also featured neighbouring buildings and shops, but have not really been clear enough to do justice to the branch itself.  We are therefore delighted to have been allowed to show a new image from 1968 (shown in close-up above, and in full here on the right), which was noticed by a friend of the Archive, Michael Jackson. 

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Image © Barclays Ref 30-0627

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1968 Branch Exterior Tim Cornwell MBA.jpg

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It comes from a collection of images held by Tim Cornwell many of which can be seen on his Flickr® page – totally random scanned 35mm slides – and by whose kind permission it is displayed here.

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You can see further examples of Martins Bank’s branches as they were photographed for postcards, on our pages for BRIGHOUSE, DEWSBURY, IRBY and MANCHESTER DEANSGATE branches).  This part of Chester has always been popular with photographers, and Mr J E Marsh – Martins Bank’s Official Photographer took the black and white image shown below, in 1958. It featured in a short article published in Martins Bank Magazine. The angle he chose from which to take his picture is, coincidentally, the most popular with the various postcard companies who have featured this view of Chester branch: -

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1958 03 MBM.jpgIn recent issues of the Magazine the emphasis has been very much on the architectural beauty of the new branches we are opening up and down the country.  Although some of our older branches are housed in buildings of no great architectural merit, this is by no means universally the case and it is as well to remind ourselves now and again of some of our older branches of which we can be every bit as proud, in an architectural sense, as of the new ones.  Chester is one of them and this photograph, taken by Mr. J. E. Marsh, our Magazine photographer, illustrates the point we are trying to make admirably. At the end of the street can be seen the tower of Chester cathedral.


1960 s National Provincial SignageMartins is not the only bank close to Chester’s historic and picturesque Eastgate to receive the honour of being featured on a picture postcard.  This lovely view from the late 1960s includes the National Provincial Bank, which, like Martins will undergo a marriage ceremony – in this case it is the “menage a trois” involving the National Provincial, the Westminster and the District Bank -  which will form the National Westminster Bank in 1970.

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Goodbye, Chester…

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We are grateful to former Barclays Staff Member Craig Turner, who wrote to let us know about the final days of Eastgate Street – despite being closed down, it appears that the branch was busy right to the end…

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1961R.jpgThe branch closed on 5th October 2001. By that time it had become a personal sector sub-branch to Barclays Chester St Werburgh Street Branch and had lost its 20-20-44 sorting code which was given to Marks & Spencer financial services for their subsequent use.  Being located on the busiest shopping street in Chester, Eastgate was a busy branch right up to closure, with three external ATMs and one inside. There were five or six tills including a busy Foreign till, and two or three personal bankers. The upper floors were largely disused towards the end, apart from a learning centre and a staff room on the top floor. In 2002 the building was bought by a shoe retailer for a (reputedly) large sum. Some exterior alterations were made, including lowering the window sills  so shoppers could actually see in. The front wall was also rebuilt after removal of the three ATMs although a few clues still remain.

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© 1949 Martins Bank Limited / Geoffrey Wedgwood

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1897 Joined then 1932 to 1946 Mr G W Meacock Manager MBM-Su46P14.jpg

1918 Mr F Green joined the bank here MBM-Wi62P50.jpg

1919 Mr W Whittaker MBM-Sp59P53.jpg

1922 to 1928 Mr H S Hayes MBM-Au48P18.jpg

1923 to 1927 Mr B A Williams MBM-Sp62P49.jpg

1939 to 1941 joined then 1961 to 1965 Mr S F P Rocke Pro Manager MBM-Sp65P07.jpg

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Mr G W Meacock

Joined here 1897

Manager 1932 to 1946

Mr F Green

Joined the Bank Here


Mr W Whittaker

On the Staff


Mr H S Hayes

On the Staff

1922 to 1928

Mr B A Williams

On the Staff

1923  to 1927

Mr S F P Rocke

Joined 1939-41

Pro Manager 1961-65

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1944 to 1944 Mr A Hill joined the bank here MBM-Wi65P05.jpg

1946 to 1955 Mr G H Shepherd Manager MBM-Su46P20.jpg

1949 to 1953 Mr R H Naylor MBM-Wi67P04.jpg

1952 Mr W H Rogers Pro Manager MBM-Su52P54.jpg

1952 to 1959 Mr A W J Roberts ProManager MBM-Sp68P04.jpg

1955 to 1960 Mr H Shimmin Manager MBM-Su60P53.jpg

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Mr A Hill

Joined the Bank here

1944 to 1944

Mr H G Shepherd


1946 to 1955

Mr R H Naylor

On the Staff

1949 to 1953

Mr W H Rogers

Pro Manager


Mr A W J Roberts

Pro Manager

1952 to 1959

Mr H Shimmin


1955 to 1960

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1959 to 1961 Mr D J Crellin Pro Manager MBM-Au64P04.jpg

1960 to 1961 Mr R M Evans Limited Authority MBM-Wi67P04.jpg

1961 to 1967 Mr J B Egan Limited Authority MBM-Su67P06.jpg

1965 to 1969 Mr J M Lee Assistant Manager MBM-Sp65P04.jpg

1969 Mr R L Kerr Assistant Manager MBM-Su69P13.jpg

BW Logo

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Mr D J Crellin

Pro Manager

1959 to 1961

Mr R M Evans

Limited Authority

1960 to 1961

Mr J B Egan

Limited Authority

1961 to 1967

Mr J M Lee

Assistant Manager

1966 to 1969

Mr R L Kerr

Assistant Manager




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Index Number and District:






11-71.20 Chester

Main Branch

35 Eastgate Street Chester Cheshire

11 Liverpool

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

Chester 22206/7

Nightsafe Installed

I C Halliwell Manager

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11-77-40 HOOLE


May 1896

18 December 1918

3 January 1928

15 December 1969

5 October 2001


Opened by the Bank of Liverpool

Bank of Liverpool and Martins Ltd

Martins Bank Limited

Barclays 20-20-44 Chester Eastgate Street


Shoe Shop