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Martins Bank 1928+

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Those coal miners’ wives…

This shiny new Branch is the new premises for Shiney Row sub-Branch, which opens at 7 Westbourne Terrace in June 1966.  Our feature FEMININE FAYRE already covers Martins’ dated attitude to the use of women staff as an attraction to male customers, but as one listener to BBC Radio 4’s Making History programme recalls, at Shiney Row in the 1960s, the tables are turned, but not in a way thet you might have expected…

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1960 s Shiney Row Exterior Door Sign BGA Ref 30-2632.jpg

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All Branch Images © Barclays Ref 0030/2632

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“Houghton le Spring  had a sub-branch at Shiney Row, and once a week the coal miners’ wives would come in for their men’s wages, which by that time were paid  directly into the Bank. Consequently, there was always great competition amongst the junior male staff to be on Shiney Row’s counter on pay day to chat up all of the wives”.


 (Michael Bryant November 2011)

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Shiney Row operates both counter and nightsafe services, and is open full hours across the six day banking week.  This is not enough however, to save it from the axe, and with the Barclays merger just seven months away, Shiney Row shuts its doors in May 1969.

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1960 s Shiney Row Interior 2 BGA Ref 30-2632.jpg

1960 s Shiney Row Interior 1 BGA Ref 30-2632.jpg

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Index Number and District:






11-79-40 Shiney Row                                                   

Sub to 11-79-40 Houghton le Spring

7 Westbourne Terrace Shiney Row Houghton le Spring County Durham

336 North Eastern

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

Fence Houses 556

Nightsafe Installed

Mr J W Bellerby Manager (Houghton le Spring)

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13 June 1966

17 May 1969

Opened by Martins Bank Limited


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