Manchester District Office…
Martins Bank’s Manchester District Office comes into being in 1928 with the amalgamation of the Bank of Liverpool and Martins with the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank. Mr F S Kitchin is appointed the first District General Manager, although under the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank, there have already been two separate District Managers since 1919. Martins’ District Offices are responsible for the control of the local branches that make up each particular district. This is achieved by a number of specialist departments within each District Office.
Those departments are represented in our District Office pages by the photographs we have available of the people who worked in them. Based on the information given in the pages of Martins Bank Magazine, we do our best to match photographs of staff to their correct department, but if you find an error, please let us know about it by sending us an e-mail to the usual address:
No 43 Spring Gardens which is home to Manchester District Office, is the Bank’s principal office in the city, being formerly the Head Office of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank Limited. It is upon the insistence of the directors of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank that the Bank of Liverpool and Martins, shortens its name to Martins Bank Limited in 1928. See also: FOUR CENTURIES OF BANKING and COAT OF ARMS. Nowadays the building at 43 Spring Gardens houses a highly commended Indian Restaurant. Importantly, the building, and its impressive banking hall remain largely as they were, but in the late 1960s, even when the Bank’s merger with Barclays was already on the cards, Martins was doing ambitious things – like appointing its first female Bank Inspectors in Manchester, AND planning to knock down its Spring Gardens premises to put something altogether different in its place…
Here come the inspectors!
Stepping out from Spring Gardens are Margaret Ashworth and Maureen Thomas, members of a Manchester District outside inspection team and the first girls in the Bank to take part in a full branch inspection. How have their male colleagues reacted? 'They've been very patient and helpful/ Maureen said, 'and soon accepted us—once they got over the initial shock.' 'We were apprehensive about breaking into what has until now been regarded as the males' prerogative/ Maureen remarked, 'but all our doubts were soon dispelled.'
Manchester – City of Trees?
The Bank’s 80 year old building at Spring Gardens Manchester, once the Head Office of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Bank, and since 1928 the home of Manchester District Office and City Office, may be pulled down. Outline planning permission has been given for the Bank’s £1.25 millions development scheme which would replace the decorative Victorian building with an eleven storey block. Included in the project is an open space at the front of the building which would be decoratively paved and planted with trees. So the Bank may be helping Manchester to become a city of trees: already twenty-eight plane trees have been planted in Albert Square.
An impression of the eleven storey block that may take the place of our present office at Spring Gardens