HSBC’s Tamworth branch celebrates 125th anniversary

Tuesday, 4th December 2018

HSBC’S branch in Tamworth, is celebrating its 125th anniversary since it first opened its doors for business.

The branch, which is currently situated at 10 Market Street, formally opened on 1st December 1893 at 35 Market Street and was established within the Birmingham and Midland Banking Corporation, more commonly known as Midland Bank.

The Midland Bank branch in Tamworth in 1993

The Midland Bank branch in Tamworth in 1993.

When the Tamworth branch opened, it was one of 112 offices, which grew to over 300 by the turn of the century.

As the Tamworth branch entered the 20th century, it continued to grow business at a steady pace, with four members of staff serving Tamworth’s residents until the outbreak of the First World War.

A number of temporary employees arrived to supply much needed manpower whilst three members of permanent staff left to join the Armed Forces.

Two of the men returned safely to Tamworth, yet unfortunately they would not welcome back their colleague, Eric Noel Coxe who sadly died on 12 June 1917 of wounds sustained in battle.

Three of Tamworth branch’s long-standing customers, including Mrs Green, far left, who became a Midland Bank customer 62 years ago.

Three of Tamworth branch’s long-standing customers, including Mrs Green, far left, who became a Midland Bank customer 62 years ago.

Jacqui Sutton, who has been the branch manager of HSBC UK Tamworth, said: “I am proud to be leading the branch team at such a momentous time. Celebrating 125 years of the branch being open in this great town has given us the opportunity to appreciate how our branch has adapted to rapidly changing consumer habits and technology over the years.”

Tamworth branch timeline:

  • 1893 – In August the Midland Bank board of directors decided a branch should be opened in Tamworth and sought to acquire a site in the town.
  • 1893 – On 1 December the Tamworth branch of Midland Bank opened, with Herbert Hawley appointed as its first branch manager.
  • 1914-1918 – Three members of permanent staff joined the Armed Forces and and served their country in the First World War. Sadly one colleague, Eric Noel Coxe*, died on 12 June 1917 of wounds sustained in battle.
  • 1920 – The branch re-located to brand new premises at 22 Market Street. This premises is now Halifax.
  • 1919-1938 – The inter-war period saw the branch double in size with up to eight counter staff working at any one time.
  • 1938-1944 – The branch faced the strain of the Second World War with five men leaving to join the Armed Forces. Two temporary male staff and four permanent female employees were recruited to take their place. Four men returned from the war. Sadly, Norman Byng Cartwright died in battle aged 21 on 4 December 1940.
  • 1969 – The branch relocated for a second time when it moved to 10 Market Street, where it can still be found today.
  • 1970 – From 14 December 1970 onwards banking transactions made at the Tamworth branch were stored on computers rather than paper.
  • 2018 – HSBC UK celebrates its 125th anniversary at the Tamworth branch.

Jacqui Sutton continued: “During the early 1890’s in branch services and the customer experience would have been significantly different to what it is like today. Opening hours coincided with local market days and the services available would be limited to business advice and small loans, receiving deposits, withdrawals authorisations and cashing cheques in, with all records paper-based and recorded in large ledgers.

“While today, the majority of our banking is done with a click of a button, where customers can keep a very close eye on their finances with our Connected Money app, they are still able to discuss our mortgage and savings options here in the branch. We are very proud to be part of a branch which has been at the centre of change in banking in the 21st century, but even more proud to continue be providing a first class service for the people of Tamworth.”

Tamworth Branch in 1920.

Tamworth Branch in 1920. This building is occupied in the present day by Halifax.