Memorial: Bankers Clearing House - 7
Site: Bankers Clearing House (7 memorials)
EC4, Lombard Street, Post Office Court
At the north end of Post Office Court, attached to the west wall adjoining St Mary Woolnoth, are six salvaged carved panels. We have numbered these left to right and top down. They can all be seen in our photo, all but number 7, a fruity capital, which is behind the camera, down on the ground and predictably, damaged.
The Bankers Clearing House was on this site 1833 - 2001. Many of these sculptures reference the various banks that were members of the clearing bank system and our identification task was greatly eased by Martin’s Bank.
Geograph have a photo and quote the City of London: "These sculptures elements were installed here in 2003/4. They were decorative elements of the building previously on the site at 10-15 Lombard Street/ 83-36 King William Street and it was a condition of the planning permission to demolish the building and build a new one that this stonework was salvaged and reinstated as part of the development. The stone panels were previously over doors and entrances to passageways across the site. The previous building on the site was a Portland stone clad building constructed in 1938/40, which was designed by Whinney Son and Austin Hall." Surely Whinney, Son and Austen Hall is meant.
It would be good to know which banks were in the Bankers Clearing House at the start of WW2, since, presumably, they would all have been represented in the architectural sculpture on the building erected at that time. We cannot find a list of that date but Martin's Bank have the list as at 1962. It has eleven names: Barclays; Coutts; District; Glyn, Mills & Co; Lloyds; Martins; Midland; National; National Provincial; Westminster; Williams Deacon's. Three of these are not represented by their symbols in the sculptures: Lloyds (horse); Martin's (grasshopper + liver bird); Westminster (river, flowers, portcullis). All three were members of the Clearing House much earlier than 1940 so it seems very likely that they would have been represented on the walls of this building, and there may have been other clearing banks at that time who were also represented. It's not surprising that some sculptural elements are probably lost.
At the south end of this Court is a piece of architectural sculpture relating to the GPO buildings that were also on this site.
Spitalfields Life has a 1956 photo of St Mary Woolnuth showing a steel framed building being constructed behind. Perhaps this is the building from which this sculpture came.