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2013 Jan 163 North Street Ext 1 CU Dave Baldwin - MBA.jpg1936 COA.jpgOur presence in Brighton begins at 163 North Street,  in a shared section of the Royal Insurance Building, which nowadays is one of Brighton’s Grade II listed buildings.  Part of that listed status is the Liver Bird Weather Vane, which is added to the building when we open there for business on 21 April 1936. We continue to transact our business here for the next twenty-one years, but by the mid 1950s, larger premises are needed, and the bank is minded to move not only to large premises, but also to a building that is significantly closer to the town centre. The new Branch is located in new “The Lanes” shopping area, at No 26 NORTH STREET, and from 1957, our presence there, both as Martins and Barclays lasts for twenty-six years. We are indebted to our good friend Dave Baldwin, for taking his camera to various parts of the country for us, to provide us with “then and now” images of our Branches.  In the case of 163 North Street, where no original shots of Martins are available, it is really helpful to have at least a modern day view of the building.  This picture was taken in January 2014, and further down the page, you can see a close up of the Liver Bird Weather Vane.

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1957 Mr AF Hill MBM-Su67P06.jpgIn his booklet “Martins Bank Branch in Sussex”, (1983) our Martins and Barclays colleague Alan Hill (pictured here, right) tells us a little of how Martins in Brighton began…

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image003{Brighton was the first Branch to be opened on the South Coast with Thomas Beecham opening the office on 21st April 1936 at 163 North Street, Brighton, in part of the Royal Insurance building next to the Chapel Royal.  The site can still be identified by its Liver Bird weather vane and is now occupied by the Leeds Permanent Building Society.  Mr Beecham remained Manager until 1947 when he retired.  Then a Mr Sandiford from Liverpool moved in, but only spent a very short time at the Branch when a domestic tragedy caused him to return to the north.  In the spring of 1949 Mr S E Pearman returned to the South Coast, moving down from Croydon Branch (having previously opened Bexhill-on-Sea Branch in 1939)}.

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Mr Beecham looks after Brighton until he is forced to retire through ill-health on 24th June 1947. As usual, his loyal staff, and Martins Bank Magazine won’t let him go without making a fuss of him…

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1936 to 1947  Mr T H Beecham Manager Retirement Feature MBM-Au47P201947 03 MBM.jpgOn June 24th, members of the staff of Hove and Bexhill branches joined those at Brighton to say farewell to Mr. T. H. Beecham, who was retiring for health reasons after 37 years' service. The presentation of a cheque was made by Mr. A. L. Lucock, Manager of Hove branch, on behalf of the subscribers ; and an autograph album containing their signatures was also presented.  Mr. Beecham entered the service in 1910 at Sidcup, going to Bexley Heath later the same year. He served in the Great War from 1914 to 1918, going to Crayford on demobilisation.

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He was transferred to Welling in 1921. He was appointed Manager at Bexley Heath in 1929 and of Brighton branch in 1936. Mr. Beecham is a Fellow of the Institute of Bankers and Vice-President of the Brighton local branch. He is also Hon. Treasurer of the Brighton and Hove branch of the United Nations Association, and is a member of the Committee of the Chamber of Commerce and Trade, and of the Western Brighton Traders' Association.

 

The Liver Bird, still acting as an iconic ambassador of the Bank, sits proudly atop the weather vane at 163 North Street.  It makes you wonder what debate there might have been when this sculpture was first planned.  Trying to incorporate the full coat of arms of Martins, with the Grasshopper above the Liver Bird would probably have looked confusing and ungainly.  Many weather vanes are of course known as weather “cocks” because of their use of a cockerel sculpture, so perhaps that common example sealed the debate…

2013 Jan 163 North Street Weathervane 4 Dave Baldwin - MBA.JPG

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Brighton 163 North Street Staff Gallery

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1936 to 1947  Mr T H Beecham Manager MBM-Au47P20.jpg

1937 to 1943 Mr E St G Tyrrell Sign Auth MBM-Su65P54.jpg

1939 to 1942  Mr A L Lucock signing authority 1946 to 1946 Pro Manager MBM-Su66P60.jpg

1944 to 1946  Mr P Little MBM-Sp64P07.jpg

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Mr T H Beecham

Manager

 21/04/36 to 24/06/47

Mr E St G Tyrell

Signing Authority

1937 to 1943

Mr A L Lucock

Sign Auth 1939-42

Pro Manager 1946-1947

Mr P Little

On the Staff

1944 to 1946

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1946 to 1948 Mr D H Cooper MBM-Sp66P07.jpg

1947 to 1955 Mr D Cottingham MBM-Sp67P03.jpg

1948 to 1957 Mr D G P West joined the bank here MBM-Au68P07.jpg

1949 to 1957 Mr S E Pearman Manager MBM-Wi62P51.jpg

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Mr D H Cooper

On the Staff

1946 to 1948

Mr D Cottingham

On the Staff

1947 to 1955

Mr D G P West

Joined the Bank Here

1948 to 1957

Mr S E Pearman

Manager

1949 to 1957

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1954 to 1957 Mr D J Adams joined the bank here MBM-Au68P07.jpg

1956 to 1957 A F Sharp Pro Manager MBM-Su65P08.jpg

1957 Mr AF Hill MBM-Su67P06.jpg

BW Logo

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Mr D J Adams

Joined the Bank Here

1954 to 1957

Mr A F Sharp

Pro Manager

1956 to 1957

Mr A F Hill

On the Staff

1957

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Brighton 163 North Street Spec

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Title:

11-133 Brighton                                              

Type:

Full Branch

Address:

163 North Street Brighton Sussex

Index Number and District:

435 London

Hours:

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

Telephone:

Brighton 26568

Services:

Nightsafe Installed

Manager:

Mr S E Pearman Manager

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image017

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21 April 1936

Opened by Martins Bank Limited

5 March 1957

Closed and moved to 26 NORTH STREET

2014

Betting Shop

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