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Premises - Aston
 
The following Minutes have been extracted from the records
of the Bank's General Committee and its Sub-Committees.
 
The Minutes cover the period up to July 1931 including the early years of the Bank as a branch network was being established.
 
Aston branch was initially opened in a room in the Aston Manor Council House, at the corner of Albert Road and Witton Road, on September 1st 1919; the Manor of Aston having been absorbed into Birmingham in 1911. The branch was moved to 22 High Street on December 1st 1919, which became the branch's permanent premises after reconstruction on February 17th 1923.
 
 
Premises
 
 
Aston
 

Bank Committee: August 29th 1919

 

The Manager reported that he had secured temporary accommodation at the Aston Council House.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: September 9th 1919

 

The Manager reported that the accommodation at the Aston Council House was not satisfactory.

 

12        RESOLVED:- That the Lord Mayor and Chairman be requested to endeavour to make arrangements with the Dunlop Rubber Co, for the use as a Branch Bank of a portion of the premises at the corner of Aston Cross which are now used by the Company for refreshment etc, purposes for their employees.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: October 27th 1919

 

38 The Manager reported that the bank had arranged to vacate the present premises at Aston, the Estates Committee had purchased the shop at 26 High Street Six Ways for the use of the Bank at a cost of 775 and would let it to the bank on reasonable terms, a portion of the premises could be let, and it was hoped that the Branch would be open in from 2 to 3 weeks time.

 

Bank Committee: November 3rd 1919

 

The Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee presented the following report:

 

Branch Bank Premises.

 

On the suggestion of your Committee the Estates Committee have purchased a shop at 22 High Street, Six Ways, Aston, at the sum of 775, and they will rent it to your Committee for use as a branch bank. It will be possible to sublet a portion, and it is hoped to be able to make all arrangements for opening this branch in two or three weeks' time. The existing branch at Aston will then be closed.

 

357 RESOLVED:- That the Report of the Finance and General Purposes Sub-Committee be approved.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: November 21st 1919

 

81 With reference to the rental of premises at Six Ways, Aston, the Manager stated that he had not yet been able to settle terms with the Estates Department. He hoped to be able to sublet a part of the premises in question at a rental of 15/- per week.

 

General Purposes Sub-Committee: January 2nd 1920

 

103 The Manager reported that the rental of Aston and Handsworth Council Houses had now been arranged with the Public Works Department at 50 per annum in each case.

 

Special Report of the Manager to the Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee:

 

The "hold ups" which have recently been reported at various Banks compel me to draw your urgent attention to the unsatisfactory condition of several of your premises, and to urge that immediate steps be taken to secure the safety of both money and staff.

 

In accordance with your previous decision, I have supplied each Branch Superintendent and the Chief Cashier at Head Office with a revolver and the necessary ammunition, and instructions to its use have been given by Mr Carver, one of the Superintendents and an ex-officer of His Majesty's Forces. I have further thought it advisable to provide police whistles.

 

With regard to the premises, I have thought it advisable to report upon each one separately as follows:

 

Aston. The premises used here are the front part of a shop, with living accommodation behind. The premises apart from the shop are sub-tenanted by a Corporation official. Access from the shop to rooms behind is obtainable.

 

These premises belong to the Corporation, and give reasonable security.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: January 2nd 1920

 

[Extract from Report of the Assistant Chief Constable, regarding the security of premises, on a visit of inspection that had been made to branches on December 17th 1919]

 

Aston. Fanlight should be better protected.

 

Bank Committee: January 5th 1920

 

Report of Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee:

 

Rental of premises, Aston and Handsworth Council Houses.

 

The rental of these premises has now been agreed with the Public Works Department at 50 per annum in each case.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: August 27th 1920

 

The Manager submitted a letter from the Town Clerk as to the tenancy of High Street, Aston. The portion of the premises referred to was let to the present tenant at a rental of 15/- per week inclusive of rates, and the question arose as to what action should be taken in view of the coming into force of the Rent &c (Restriction) Act, 1920.

 

267     RESOLVED:- That no increase be made at present in the rent charged to Mr Tafft.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: October 22nd 1920

 

The Manager presented the following Report:

 

Aston Premises

 

The work at this Branch cannot be satisfactorily undertaken as the premises are now. Councillor Ward has visited the same with the Manager, and it is recommended that the present shop front be replaced by a shop front giving a side entrance. This will admit of 1' 6" more space for the public, and would allow of the counter being moved 1 ft forward with the corresponding gain in room behind the counter.

 

320    RESOLVED:- That the Manager be instructed to make enquiries as to the utilities of premises adjoining No 22 High Street, Six Ways, for the purposes of extending the existing Branch, and that meanwhile the question of the required repairs be deferred.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: November 19th 1920

 

On Minute No 320, the Manager stated enquiries made as to adjoining premises to 22 High Street, Six Ways, showed that an extension of the Branch on either side would not be practicable at present. With regard to the required alterations to improve the accommodation, alternative tenders of Mr Richard Hunt for carrying out the work were submitted.

 

345     RESOLVED:- That the tender of Mr R Hunt at 26. 10. 0. for improvements to the above premises be accepted, and the General Committee be asked to confirm the Sub-Committee's action in the matter.

 

Bank Committee: November 22nd 1920

 

673 The following Report of the Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee was presented:

 

22 High Street, Six Ways, Aston.

 

Your Sub-Committee have caused enquiries to be made as to the possibility of acquiring or leasing adjacent premises for the purpose of eventually extending the Branch accommodation. This has been found to be impracticable at the present time, and in view of the alterations necessary to give better accommodation for depositors, your Sub-Committee have accepted the tender of Mr R Hunt at 26. 10. 0. for the carrying out the necessary work and now ask that their action be confirmed.

 

674 RESOLVED:- That the action taken in accepting Tenders for carrying out of the repairs to Branch Bank premises in the following cases referred to in the foregoing Report, be confirmed:

 

Name of Premises.             Contractor                  Amount

Gt Lister Street                     J T Harris                   75. 7. 0.

22 High Street,                     R Hunt                       26. 10. 0

   Six Ways.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: December 13th 1920

 

On Minute No 354 the Manager presented the following Report:

 

HEATING & LIGHTING OF BRANCHES.

 

This matter has been carefully looked into by the Chairman, Councillors Gelling and Ward, who have visited the various branches. The position is summarised below with the recommendations:

 

Aston.

 

The improvement effected by alteration of doorway will contribute towards making the premises warmer, but the electric radiator is not satisfactory. It is recommended that gas heating be introduced here, and that a vestibule be fixed at a cost of 21.

 

From the foregoing it will be seen that the general conclusions arrived at are:

1. That electric heating is not a satisfactory method, having regard to the nature of the business.

2. That it is necessary to give the impression that the Bank is open during business hours, and to do this the outer door should be opened and vestibules arranged.

3. That where the premises are only in the nature of temporary premises or are otherwise fairly satisfactorily heated, additional warmth should be procured by oil stoves.

 

A statement was submitted showing the comparative costs of electric lighting and heating and gas, and while it was found that during the Christmas and Lady Day quarters last year the electric lighting and heating cost 26 at Sparkbrook and 21 at Lozells, gas lighting and heating at Duddeston and Saltley combined only worked out at 3. 14. 0d. The hours of business at these branches during the periods taken were the same.

 

The electric wires and fittings are on the hire purchase system, the installation becoming the property of the Bank at the expiration of 3 years.

 

The electric radiators are on the permanent hire system, and the agreements are for 3 years. It is recommended that the Electric Supply Department be asked to content to the cancellation of the agreements in the cases where it is advisable to substitute gas heating.

 

The gas radiators (except in the cases of Aston Cross and Bearwood) are on the permanent hire system and the agreement are for 2 years. It is recommended that Gas Department be asked to consent to the cancellation of the agreements in the cases now on the permanent hire system, and to substitute fresh agreements on the hire purchase system.

 

367     RESOLVED:- That the Report be approved and the General Committee recommended to adopt the recommendations therein contained.

 

Finance & General Purposes Sub-Committee: December 12th 1921

 

On Minute No 516 (Aston Branch Premises) the Manager reported as follows:

 

Aston Branch Premises.

 

The lack of accommodation is likely to have a serious effect on the Branch, and the necessity of providing better accommodation is urgent. The Manager asks for a small Sub-Committee to be appointed to view these premises and deal with the question.

 

549 RESOLVED:- That Mr Alderman Lovsey and Councillors Appleby and Gelling be requested to inspect the Aston Branch premises and authorised to take such action with regard thereto as they may consider desirable.

 

General Purposes Sub-Committee: January 9th 1922

 

8 On Minutes Nos 516 and 549 (Aston Branch premises) the Sub-Committee were informed that negotiations in regard to this matter were proceeding.

 

Finance Sub-Committee: January 16th 1922

 

Repayment of Purchase Money to Housing and Estates Committee.

 

It will be remembered that in the early stages of the Bank the necessary money required to purchase premises for the purpose of Branch Banks was found by the Housing and Estates Committee on behalf of the Bank, it being understood that when the Bank was in a position to repay the amount thus found steps would be taken to meet this liability. Interest is being charged on the amount outstanding at 6%. The Bank have already repaid the sum of 1,818 in respect of the purchase of premises at Sparkbrook, but there remains a sum of 6,634. 13. 7d. owing to the Housing and Estates Committee for other purchases at Aston, Kings Heath, Duddeston, Ladywood and Rotton Park.

 

Your Sub-Committee have carefully considered this matter, and they recommend that the amount at present owing to the Housing and Estates Committee should be repaid, and that the Committee's thanks be conveyed to them for their assistance in the matter.

 

Bank Committee: January 16th 1922

 

1036 RESOLVED:- That payment be made to the Housing and Estates Committee of the sum due to them in respect of the acquisition of Branch Bank premises amounting to 6,634. 13. 7d and that the best thanks of this Committee be conveyed to them for their assistance in the matter.

 

General Purposes Sub-Committee: March 13th 1922

 

65 On Minute No 8 (Aston Branch Premises) the Manager reported that the property near Six Ways with regard to which enquiries had recently been made, had now been disposed of.

 

General Purposes Sub-Committee: June 12th 1922

 

On Minute No 8 (Aston Branch Premises, High Street, Six Ways) the Sub-Committee's attention was called to the urgent need for improved accommodation at these premises.

 

106    RESOLVED:- That the Manager be instructed to authorise Mr McMichael, Architect, to submit a scheme and plan for the carrying out of the necessary alterations.

 

General Purposes Sub-Committee: July 10th 1922

 

On Minutes Nos 8 and 106 (Branch Premises, High Street, Six Ways) the Manager reported that Councillors Appleby and Gelling had inspected the above premises and were of opinion that endeavours should be made to obtain possession of an adjoining property with a view to the Bank Premises being extended. With reference to the existing premises they were of opinion that certain structural alterations should be made as soon as possible.

 

123    RESOLVED:- That the General Committee be recommended to authorise the Chairman of this Sub-Committee, Councillor Appleby, and the Manager to accept the most suitable Tender for carrying out of the required alterations at No 22 High Street, Six Ways as indicated on the plan submitted, and to authorise the Town Clerk to prepare and seal any necessary Contract, also that Mr Wilde be authorised to negotiate for the acquisition of the adjoining property for the use of the Bank.

 

 

 

 

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