DEPOSITS REACH £1 BILLION
In 1951, the combined deposits in trustee savings banks across the country topped £1 billion for the first time.
The savings bank movement grew in strength during both world wars. The banks acted as agents for the sale of Government stocks - war savings certificates and defence bonds proved popular with depositors. Further branch expansion occurred after 1947, when a Mutual Assistance Scheme was established. This enabled richer banks to lend money to set up new banks, or extend existing ones. Fifty-nine new offices were opened as a result.
1955 BANK OF SCOTLAND
The Glasgow-based Union Bank of Scotland merged with Bank of Scotland in 1955. By joining forces, the branch network was nearly doubled.
The Glasgow Union Banking Company was founded in 1830. Thirteen years later, after a series of takeovers, it was renamed the Union Bank of Scotland. This reflected its now national status. A high proportion of the Bank's lending was to heavy industry. Customers included ship builders John Brown & Co, of 'Queen Mary' fame. But problems in this sector affected the Bank, leading it to later seek a merger.
1959 BANK OF SCOTLAND
THE COMPUTER REVOLUTION
In 1959, Bank of Scotland became the first UK bank to introduce a computer for centralised accounting. Computers were to revolutionise the banking industry.
The Bank's Centralised Accounting Unit initially served just four branches. It took a decade to transfer all customer accounts onto the system. The arrival of the first computer was a source of great excitement. Several branch managers were taken to see it at the George Street office in Edinburgh. Only a few were allowed in at a time, for fear their body heat would cause the machine to malfunction!
1960 BANK OF SCOTLAND
IN THE NEWS
The late 1950s and early '60s saw mainstream banks turn to mass-marketing, in a drive to widen their customer base. Advertising in national newspapers became the norm.
Bank of Scotland launched this campaign in 1960, encouraging people 'in all walks of life' to give their services a try. Banks also courted new markets by radically expanding their branch networks. They opened branches in new locations such as universities, industrial estates, airports and the post-war New Towns. Success was limited, however. Even in 1965, only 16% of adults in Scotland held a bank account.
NEW LOGO FOR TSBs
The trustee savings bank movement celebrated its 150th anniversary in 1960. As part of the celebrations, the TSB Association commissioned a new national logo.
The aim of the logo was to enhance the local image of the individual savings banks, while signalling their part in a nationwide movement. The new design showed the initials ‘TSB’ in iconic typeface, in three adjoining circles. It was simple, easily recognised and could be used in a variety of layouts. The logo was launched in 1961, and proved an immediate success
In August 1961, Lloyds Bank opened its first drive-in branch at High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire. The idea was to make banking faster and simpler.
Drive-ins were pioneered in the USA, in the 1930s. They are more usually associated with cinemas or fast-food chains. The High Wycombe drive-in bank was one of the first in the UK.
However, the concept never really took off, and only a handful ever opened.
These days many banks in the US have 'drive-thru' ATMs
FIRST COMPUTER AT LLOYDS
The computerisation of branch accounting systems at Lloyds began in 1962. That year saw the installation of the Bank’s first computer, at Pall Mall Branch in London.
Early computers were so large that scaffolding and cranes were often needed to install them. On occasions, a hole had to be made in the wall. By October 1970, Lloyds had transferred its entire branch network onto a computerised accounting system. The Bank's aim had been to complete the project before the introduction of decimalisation, in February 1971.
1963 BANK OF SCOTLAND
BANK GOES MOBILE
In April 1963, Bank of Scotland launched its first fleet of mobile banks. These served rural communities in the Bathgate and Haddington areas.
The mobile banks were well received. Over the course of the following year, the Bank extended the service to north-west Scotland and the Isle of Skye. A floating bank was also introduced around this time, to serve the outlying districts of the Orkney Islands. It was operated from the 'M.V. Orcadia', a passenger and cargo vessel.
Bank of Scotland still operates a mobile banking service today.
1967 BANK OF SCOTLAND
COUNTING THE CASH
In 1967, Bank of Scotland introduced note and coin dispensing machines into its busiest branches. The same models were used until the mid-1970s.
Before the advent of these machines, bank tellers had to count all cash by hand. In Scotland, counting banknotes by hand was referred to as 'scoring', because notes would be counted off in groups of 20 (a 'score'). Tellers would race one another to see who could count their notes the fastest!
1968 BANK OF SCOTLAND
'Scotcash', a forerunner of the ATM or cash machine, was introduced by Bank of Scotland in 1968. Customers could now withdraw cash even when their branch was closed.
'Scotcash' machines operated 24 hours a day. Customers were given personal code numbers to activate the machines, similar to the modern PIN. They were also supplied with £10 vouchers. These were fed into the machine, and the corresponding amount later debited from the customer's account. Any sum in multiples of £10 could be withdrawn. The machines proved popular, and by the end of 1971, there were 26 in operation across Scotland.
LLOYDS BANK INTERNATIONAL
By the 1960s, Lloyds had offices across the globe. In 1971, it rationalised operations by merging its main international subsidiaries, BOLSA and Lloyds Bank Europe.
The new subsidiary was initially called Lloyds & Bolsa International, but was later renamed Lloyds Bank International. The integration of the two businesses, and two cultures, was a major undertaking – one company covered Europe and the other South America. But the merger was successful. A stronger, bigger bank was created, and the foundations laid for further international expansion.
FIRST CASHPOINT MACHINE INSTALLED
In December 1972, Lloyds Bank installed its first Cashpoint machine at Brentwood in Essex. By 1988, more than 2,000 were in operation up and down the country.
Some banks already had earlier versions of cash machines in their branches. These usually involved pre-paid tokens and vouchers, which allowed customers to access their money. The first Cashpoints, however, were very similar to today’s ATMs. All the machines were online, issued variable amounts and immediately debited the customer's account.
1974 BANK OF SCOTLAND
THE 'OIL BANK'
Bank of Scotland pioneered the financing of the energy industry in the North Sea. Widely known as the 'Oil Bank', it established a specialist Oil Division in 1974.
The Bank's relationship with the North Sea energy industry began in the 1950s, with the discovery of natural gas. In 1972, it became the first UK clearing bank to commit to BP's development of the Forties oil field. From this point on, Bank of Scotland offered specialist funding to the oil industry. A year after forming its Oil Division, the Bank opened its first overseas office in Houston, Texas.
UNIFICATION OF THE TSBS
Historically, individual savings banks had been largely independent of one another. However, this all changed with the TSB Act of 1976...
The Page Committee had been set up by the government to advise on the restructuring of the TSBs. The resulting Act of Parliament stipulated that the 73 existing savings banks should merge into 20 (later 16) regional institutions. These were to be overseen by a central board. Crucially, the Act also allowed TSBs to offer similar financial services to those of the clearing banks, such as personal loans.
1979 BANK OF SCOTLAND
LOANS FOR HOMES
In June 1979, Bank of Scotland introduced its House Purchase Loan Scheme. Until then, mortgages had been largely the preserve of building societies.
When the Bank's loan scheme started, home ownership levels in Scotland stood at 35%, compared with 51% across the UK as a whole. Demand for mortgages increased the following year with the introduction of the 'right to buy' for council house tenants. By 1987, Bank of Scotland had provided over £1 billion in home loans. Today, Scottish home ownership stands at 62%, in comparison with 68% in England.
1985 BANK OF SCOTLAND
THE ADVENT OF HOME BANKING
The revolutionary HOBS (Home and Office Banking Service) was launched by Bank of Scotland in 1985. It was the UK’s first electronic home banking service.
Long before the Internet was widely available, Bank of Scotland customers could actively manage their accounts from the comfort of their own sitting room. All they needed was a TV screen and telephone link-up. The service attracted many new customers. A staggering 60% of HOBS users who registered in the first two years were completely new to the Bank.
TSB Group was floated on the London Stock Exchange in 1986. For the first time, it had shareholders, and could compete with other high street banks on an equal footing.
The share offer was well-advertised, and caught the public’s imagination. It used images of ordinary people wearing bowler hats, sending out the message that anyone could own shares. The campaign clearly worked, as the offer was massively over-subscribed. The flotation broke City of London records, and raised more than £1.2bn. It also allowed TSB Group plc to provide a wider range of banking services.
TELEPHONE BANKING LAUNCHED
Speedlink, the UK’s first telephone banking system, was launched by TSB in 1987. It allowed people to access their account information and conduct transactions, all from the convenience of home.
The service used the latest voice-response technology, enabling customers to communicate directly with the Bank’s online computer system. Speedlink operated 18 hours a day, seven days a week. Within the first few months, more than 100,000 customers had signed up.