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Wanna buy another bank or two?

31 Aug

As the money flowed in during the boom times of  the turn of last century so the banks thought it wise to make a presence on Hessle Road. So substantial buildings adorned, as was the style in those days, with the symbols of strength and security were built to supply the needs of the local trawler owners, skippers and three day millionaires (though perhaps not so much the latter). Lions with shields were the choice here on the Yorkshire Bank …
…and a shield with lions at Barclays.
No matter, now the money is now no longer flowing the banks are both empty and for sale along with the strength and security.

Wanna buy a bank?

31 May

I’ve shown bits of this building before but for some reason never the tout ensemble. This was until recently the HSBC bank on Whitefriargate. Imposing old pile isn’t it? The usual outlook for buildings of this nature is to be transformed into a bar/club/restaurant and perhaps given the HSBC connection something with a little Mexican/Columbian flavour might be appropriate. They could called it El Cartel, just a suggestion.

Change of use

18 Mar
Paragon Street, Hull

In what appears to be a remarkable outbreak of common sense Lloyd’s Bank is moving from its position on Paragon Street to a new place round the corner on Jameson Street. Yeah wow, I know, exciting (not). But bear with me, the old place along with the empty former Job Centre next door is being converted into apartments with affordable rents. Bringing people to live in the town centre, occupying these large empty shops and offices has got to be a ‘good thing’. If the scheme succeeds there are plenty of similar buildings that could be used in this way. Whisper it gently though, this is social housing (if by proxy), with a not-for-profit trust and the Council owned builders firm involved under a Government project to bring empty buildings back into use. And it only tickles the surface of the massive housing shortage crisis in this green and pleasant land, still the journey of a thousand miles begins by putting your shoes on as someone once said.

Jameson Street, Hull

Silver and Green Ginger

9 Dec

At the corner of Silver Street and Land of Green Ginger site this imposing pile of Portland stone built in 1873. No prizes for guessing it was once a bank, the Natwest bank in fact. Since the banking crisis means banks no longer have any need for savers to put real money in, they simply get their ‘cash’ from the Bank of England at zero charge, they have no need of expensive branches like this so it’s been sold off. I’ve read that an application for permission for change of use to a “restaurant” and “drinking establishment” (I like that phrase even if it’s yet another trendy wine bar!) has been made. I heard today that the much vaunted trickle down effect hasn’t worked, but with all the coffee bars and boozers round here I think the trickle might become a flood …

Did Britannia waive the rules?

26 Nov

This building on the corner of Whitefriargate and Land of Green Ginger was built in 1886 to house the Colonial and United States Mortgage Company. The architects were one Mr Clamp and our old friend Alfred Gelder. I know nothing of the Colonial and US Mortgage Company, Google refuses to enlighten me. I can tell you that many years after it was built it housed another mortgage company, the Britannia Building Society, later to become the Britannia Bank. Why isn’t it still a branch of Britannia? Well you know it’s just the old, old story ….
The Britannia Building Society, was caught up in the dying embers of the 2008 crash. It was  formed in the mid 19th century and was the second largest building society until it merged with the Cooperative Bank in 2009. Now I’m not going to say there was a criminal enterprise involved because no-one has been charged with anything but  the Britannia  had a boat load of bad debts (sub-prime garbage) on its books. The merged concerned had to be ‘distanced’ from the mutual Co-op and in effect bought out. Expect a huge legal brouhaha over all this. Meanwhile if you know anyone who wants a Victorian French renaissance style office and erstwhile bank, here’s one going spare.
Here’s how it looked when new and yes it was enlarged at a later date. And quite how, despite being a listed building, that ornate frontage was replaced with  plate glass dreck is probably a story too murky for sensitive souls.

Former Bank in Red

29 Sep
Staying on Lairgate, across from Narrow Racket is this striking building. It was originally the Beverley Savings Bank back in 1843. I was going to say that was a time before bankers became pariahs and despised amongst men but I doubt there ever was such a time.

Meet the new bank, same as the old bank.

24 Nov

A few months ago this Lloyds bank turned overnight into a TSB. This, I’ve read, was to increase competition among the retail banks (no, I couldn’t believe that either). I doubt it’ll make much difference to one man and his dog.