1111 Warwick Road, Birmingham, B27 6RA
Premises at 1109-1111 Warwick Road,
prior to reconstruction
Two views of the newly completed premises in 1925
An unusual location for the official photograph of the assembled dignitaries attending the opening ceremony on June 27th 1925
at the rear of the branch?)
Right: Opening ceremony for the new premises: June 27th 1925. The Chairman and Lord Mayor are to the right of the Bank's General Manager
and his deputy. Prior to the opening ceremony, the dignitaries took tea in the Council School, Warwick Road
Appleby speaking after the unveiling of the Commemoration Tablet
Depositors entering the branch after the opening ceremony
below: Two views of the interior of the branch in 1925;
and after later enlargement of the premises in 1933
The hamlet of Acocks Green on the Birmingham to Warwick road became a rural sanctuary for Birmingham's wealthy businessmen following
the opening of a railway station in 1852. The high-class area that was subsequently developed, was to change after Yardley Rural District
(of which Acocks Green was a part) was absorbed into Birmingham in 1911. After the First World War, the still largely rural landscape
of Acocks Green was included in the city's South Birmingham Town Planning Scheme, which commenced in 1925 with thousands of council
houses then being built. The shopping centre of this large housing estate developed around a junction of several roads (including
Warwick Road) that were equidistant between the nearby Acocks Green, Tysleley, and Spring Road railway stations.
This area was
remodelled in 1932 when a tram terminus was constructed. Following the later closure of the terminus, a grassed island was created
which came to be known as 'The Green'. What was to eventually become one of the BMB's busiest branches was located in this shopping
The centre of Acocks Green is located at the junction of Warwick Road with Shirley Road, Westley Road, Dudley Park Road, and
Station Road. This early 20th-Century view towards Olton in Solihull shows Warwick Road with Shirley Road on the right. The premises
purchased by the Bank in 1924 can be identified by the gables on the right side of the road.
When the Bank commenced on September 1st 1919, Acocks Green was open for business on Monday, Friday, and Saturday Evenings at 18:00
to 19:30.The premises used were the old Police Station situated on the Warwick Road, opposite Dudley Park Road.
In 1924, a lock-up
butcher's shop and an adjoining double-fronted house situated at 1109-1111 Warwick Road (together with slaughterhouse, stabling, fasting
pens, garage, etc at the rear) were purchased for £3,750. The frontage to Warwick Road was 60' - the dwelling house occupying 33'
6"; and the lock-up shop 26' 6". The total area at 875 square yards was more extensive than the Bank required, and the City's Gas
Department agreed to join in the purchase so that a combined reconstruction scheme could be carried out. This scheme produced a branch
for the Bank with accommodation above, and an adjoining gas showroom.
The Lord Mayor (Alderman Percival Bower) presided over the opening ceremony of the new branch on June 27th 1925. Councillor Appleby
(the Bank's Chairman) formally opened the branch, and spoke at the ceremony to say that the Bank was really in its infancy and there
were more areas that the committee intended to cover. They wanted to train people in the banking habit, and teach them to pay cash
instead of instalments. He looked forward to the time when each of the Bank's branches would be a kind of civic centre in its own
district, bringing economy in the administration of the city's affairs. Acocks Green became the Bank's eighteenth permanent branch.
At this date, the branch had 1,671 depositors, with balances of approximately £50,000.
Alterations to accommodate a rapid growth
in business were undertaken in 1932/1933.
On February 10th 1941
, the branch sustained slight War Damage
during an air raid.
1919 - J Kesterton
1926 - H J Sutherland
1926 - N G Yardley
1928 - G A Harling
1929 to 1931 - L E Smallwood
1934 - J A Duff
to 1959 - L H Hurdman
1960 to 1967 - A Oldham
1969 - J W Smith
1970 to 1971 N C Goddard
1972 to 1974 H Wheelock
Branch Deposit Balances at March 31st:
1921 - £16,474
1926 - £81,313
1946 - £2,059,669
1947 - £2,179,547
Number of Open Accounts
at March 31st:
1920 - 423
1947 - 18,382 (Savings: 18,163; Mortgage: 219)
Average Weekly Transactions:
1920 - 61
Annual Transactions - Year Ended March 31st 1947: 111,695
Temporary premises 1919 to 1925
= location of 1111 Warwick Road - just to the east of 'The Green'
'The Green' in 1952
(Photograph courtesy of Alton Douglas: 'Birmingham In The Fifties (Vol 2)'
published by Brewin Books)