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Martins Bank�s 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 Martins Bank opens there for business on 21 April 1936.


The Bankcontinues to transact 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.

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The new Branch is located in new �The Lanes� shopping area, at No 26 NORTH STREET, and from 1957 the Bank is there, first as Martins then Barclays, for twenty-six years. We are indebted to friend of the Archive and former Martins Colleague 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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In Service: 21 April 1936 until5 March 1957

Image � Martins Bank Archive Collections - Dave Baldwin


In his booklet �Martins Bank Branch in Sussex�, (1983) former Martins and Barclays colleague Alan Hill, pictured here, looks at the once thriving business of the Bank along the South Coast of England, and tells us too, a little of how the story of Martins Bank in Brighton began�

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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Image � Barclays 1936

Mr Beecham looks after Brighton until he is forced to retire through ill-health on 24 June 1947. This is after thirty-seven years� service, something that today would be seen as a remarkable amount of ime to spend working for the same company � the definition of �a job for life�.Martins Bank Magazine is as usual, on hand at the retirement celebrations�

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. 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.Sep 1.jpg

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2013 Jan 163 North Street Weathervane 4 Dave Baldwin - MBA


Getting the bird?

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Could it be that this is actually meant to be the Liver Bird, still acting as an iconic ambassador of the Bank, sitting proudly atop the weather vane at 163 North Street?Marvellous as it would be to have this proud symbol of the Bank and of the City of Liverpool on show so far South, we are not completely convinced. 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 Bank, 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 might just seal the debate once and for all�

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

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






Mr T H Beecham


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

Mr D H Cooper

On the Staff

1946 to 1948

Mr D Cottingham

On the Staff

1947 to 1955






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

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






Mr D G P West

Joined the Bank Here

1948 to 1957

Mr S E Pearman


1949 to 1957

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




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Index Number and District:






11-133 Brighton����������������������������������������������

Full Branch

163 North Street Brighton Sussex

435 London

Mon to Fri 1000-1500

Saturday 0900-1130

Brighton 26568

Nightsafe Installed

Mr S E Pearman Manager


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Brighton 26 North Street

21 April 1936

5 March 1957

Opened by Martins Bank Limited

Closed and moved to 26 NORTH STREET