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Manchester: Bank of England branch: survey plan of premises in Norfolk Street, survey plans and designs for alterations in two phases for premises at 35 King Street, 1826-1831 (123)

Samuel Gregg's property at 35 King Street was bought for £5,250 following George Bailey's recommendation, and opened a little over a month later on 21 September 1826. Acres' observation that 'but few alterations were required to adapt the premises to the Bank's purposes' (op. cit. below, p. 431) is a little misleading. There were, in fact, several stages of work, the first of which (drawings 3-33) was executed before the bank opened. Further minor alterations were made in 1827 (drawings 34-39). It was not until 1830, however, that substantial alterations were made to the bank, including the addition of a second front entrance, a new coach house and stables, and a service wing in place of the old warehouses at the rear of the premises (drawings 42-123). A large number of the drawings for the Manchester branch bank in the Soane Museum's collections are working drawings made during this stage. The verso of SM 38/1/7 has a design for alterations to the Manchester branch (not yet catalogued).

Between 1826 and 1830 the bank had two agents and five sub-agents (op. cit. below, p. 577). Alexander McGregor, the first agent, was succeeded in 1828 by John Reid. Despite the changes of staff by 1831 the Manchester bank was one of only two branches (the other being Birmingham) to have made sufficient profits to cover its expenses (op. cit. below, p. 565). A new building designed by C. R. Cockerell (1788-1863) was erected between 1845 and 1847 on a site adjacent to the former branch bank on King Street. This building still houses the Bank of England's agency for the north west and is listed grade I.

Literature:
W. Marston Acres, The Bank of England from Within, 1694-1900, Vol. II, 1931; English Heritage, British Listed Buildings: Bank of England Trustee Savings Bank, Manchester, <www.britishlistedbuildings.co.uk>

Tom Drysdale, May 2013
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