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North Eastern Banking Company

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The North Eastern Banking Company opens its Branch at Bishop Auckland in 1897, and there follows  run of eighty years of Banking service from this lovely old building, until Barclays relocates to another site in the town in 1977. Bishop Auckland is a full branch with no sub-Branches.  Almost as a reminder that although Martins is a NATIONAL bank, its Head Office and much of its operation is in the North, this mock-up cheque from the front of a Nationally distributed 1968 product leaflet proudly features the details of the Bank’s Bishop Auckland Branch. 


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Branch Images © Barclays Ref 0030/0265


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1968 Bishop auckland Cheque from Leaflet BGA Ref A-70 1968 How a bank account could help youThis might be seen as a little more honest and direct perhaps than the “Anytown” used by many banks in similar literature, or indeed Barclays’ own fictitious “High Street, Caxton” branch! 

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These days, when the words “a job for life” really are indicative of a past age, we can hardly imagine what it must be like to serve the same employer for more than forty years.  As we have seen in the many retirement features in the Archive, it is not uncommon for some Martins managers to have clocked up forty-five or more years. 

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1960 is a leap year, so when on 29 February Bishop Auckland Manager Mr Russell retires, the Bank effectively squeezes an extra day out of him!  Martins Bank Magazine now reports on the events of Mr Russell’s last day in the Bank, and look out for the gentle sexism of the day when his wife is described as giving a “charming little speech” having accepted the gift of a bunch of flowers…

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1960 02 MBM.jpg1944 to 1960 Mr E B Russell Manager MBM-Su60P49.jpgMr. E. B. Russell, Manager at Bishop Auckland, retired on February 29th after 44 years’ service. Most of this time he spent in the South West area of Durham where he is widely known and very highly respected. Among his many activities he is a past, President of Bishop Auckland Rotary Club. He was appointed Manager at Wearhead in 1932, Manager at Crook in 1937 and at Bishop Auckland in 1944.

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Mr. L. J. Walton, District General Manager of the North Eastern District, arrived at the branch during the morning of the 29th to express in person his good wishes for the future, and in the evening Mr. and Mrs. Russell entertained past and present col­leagues to a dinner party held in the King’s Restaurant, Bishop Auckland. The guests included Mr. G. A. Weatherburn, Inspector, representing the District Management and, later on, Mr. W. S. Blaylock, Inspector, who called in on his way back from Darlington.

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Mr. S. Hading, on behalf of the subscribers, presented Mr. Russell with four sets of crystal glassware, and Mr. Weatherburn spoke a few words on behalf of the Management. Mr. Russell expressed his thanks and the guests were highly entertained by his anecdotes of the early days in the North Eastern Banking Company.

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In more serious mood Mr. Russell said that his chosen career in the Bank had given him a very full and satisfying life and the memories he had to look back on were stimulating and happy ones. He paid tribute to his staff, to his colleagues and to his wife, whose help and understanding had been a constant source of strength.

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At this point in the evening Miss Barbara Sutton presented Mrs. Russell with a bouquet for which she expressed her appreciation in a most charming little speech.

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1899 to 1909 Mr J G Shaw Joined the service here MBM-Wi46P19.jpg

1908 to 1915 Mr H Stitt MBM-Wi48P11.jpg

1914 Mr E Farndale joined the bank here MBM-Sp56P53.jpg

1916  to 1919 Mr T Hopper joined the bank here MBM-Sp60P44.jpg

1918 to 1919 Mr T Blenkinsopp MBM-Sp49P25.jpg

1918 to 1922  Mr S Surtees MBM-Su52P53.jpg

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Mr J G Shaw

Joined the Bank Here

1899 to 1909

Mr H Stitt

On the Staff

1908 to 1915

Mr E Farndale

Joined the Bank Here


Mr T Hopper

Joined the Bank Here

1916 to 1919

Mr T Blenkinsopp

On the Staff

1918 to 1919

Mr S Surtees

On the Staff

1918 to 1922

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1944 to 1960 Mr E B Russell Manager MBM-Su60P49.jpg

1952 to 1953 Mr K G Dixon MBM-Sp68P07.jpg

1960 to 1965 Mr R Russell Manager MBM-Au65P04.jpg

1963 to 1966 Mr A McDonald Ltd Auth from 1964 MBM-Wi66P03.jpg

1964 Miss BPV Chisholm First Cashier MBM-Sp64P57.jpg

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Mr E B Russell


1944 to 1960

Mr R Morton

Joined the Bank Here

1950 to 1952

Mr K G Dixon

On the Staff

1952 to 1953

Mr R Russell


1960 to 1965

Mr A MacDonald

Limited Authority

1963 to 1966

Miss B P V Chisholm

First Cashier


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1965 Mr F Bates Manager MBM-Au65P04.jpg

1966 Mr R Thompson pro Manager MBM-Wi66P03.jpg

BW Logo

BW Logo

BW Logo

BW Logo

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Mr F Bates


1965 onwards

Mr R Thompson

Pro Manager






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2 Branches


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3 Branches

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Index Number and District:






Martins Bank Limited 11-80-00 Bishop Auckland

Full Branch

PO Box 4 10 Newgate Street Bishop Auckland County Durham

312 North Eastern

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

Bishop Auckland 2118

Nightsafe Installed

Mr F Bates Manager

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7 August 1914

18 December 1918

3 January 1928

15 December 1969

21 January 1977


Opened by the North Eastern Banking Company

Bank of Liverpool

Bank of Liverpool and Martins Limited

Martins Bank Limited

Barclays Bank Limited 20-09-45 Bishop Auckland Newgate St


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