Use our timelines to explore more than 300 years of history.

The story of Lloyds Banking Group stretches back to 1695. Uncover this rich and unique heritage by taking a look at our timeline.

For an optimum view of the timeline when using a mobile phone or tablet, please turn your phone to landscape.

1695 - 1900

    • Taylor & Lloyds founded

      1765 - Lloyds Bank

       

      Lloyds Bank began life as Taylors & Lloyds in Birmingham, in 1765. It was founded by Sampson Lloyd II, John Taylor and their two sons. Each invested £2,000.

       

      Sampson Lloyd’s father had fled Wales for Birmingham at the end of the 17th century, to escape persecution for his Quaker beliefs. Sampson, also a prominent Quaker, followed his father into the iron trade. John Taylor was a Unitarian and a cabinet maker. He was also well-known for his exquisite snuff boxes. But from 1765, the men concentrated entirely on the bank. For the first 100 years, this prospered from a single Birmingham office.

    • Traveller cheque invented

      1772 - Lloyds Bank

       

      Robert Herries established a bank in London’s West End, in 1772. He went on to invent the 'circular note', forerunner of today’s traveller’s cheque.

       

      Before the circular note, obtaining money while abroad could be time-consuming and expensive. Herries’ business thrived in an age when the aristocracy viewed the Grand Tour as a rite of passage for their sons. So successful was the note that other banks were soon obliged to offer the same service.

       

      Herries, Farquhar & Co, as it was latterly known, was acquired by Lloyds in 1893.

    • Branching out

      1774 - Bank of Scotland

       

      In 1774, Bank of Scotland successfully opened its first branch offices in Dumfries and Kelso. But transporting money to and from branches could be a dangerous business.

       

      In the 18th and 19th centuries, highwaymen posed one of the greatest threats to road travellers. The large sums of money carried by Bank messengers made them a tempting target. Deliveries to Dumfries, for example, usually consisted of £6,000 in banknotes – about £380,000 today. Small wonder then that the messengers were accompanied by armed guards. Their weapons of choice were flintlock pistols or a blunderbuss.

    • First female bank clerk

      1785 - Bank of Scotland

       

      Eleanora Hog was taken on as a 'Day Book' clerk at the British Linen Company in 1785. This is the earliest known record of a female bank clerk in Scotland.

       

      Her appointment was unique. It was almost certainly related to the fact her father, Walter Hog, was manager of the Company. But Eleanora was good at her job - she was subsequently promoted to Ledger Clerk, and then to Book-keeper. Her salary in each case was equal to that of her male counterparts.

       

      Eleanora retired in 1816. It was to be another 99 years before a female clerk was employed again!

    • Lines written on a note

      1786 - Bank of Scotland

       

      On the brink of financial ruin, Rabbie Burns wrote a poem lamenting his lack of money. He penned the lines on the back of a Bank of Scotland guinea note.

       

      Almost penniless after a series of setbacks, Burns planned to emigrate to Jamaica. It was a painful decision:

       

      'I leave this much-lov'd shore, Never, perhaps, to greet old Scotland more'.

       

      But Burns' fortunes were about to change. A friend encouraged him to publish some poems to raise money for the trip. The resulting work, 'Poems, chiefly in the Scottish dialect', was an instant success.

    • The artist forger

      1788 - Bank of Scotland

       

      In 1788 Thomas Watling, an art master in Dumfries, was accused of forging Bank of Scotland guinea notes. Facing the death penalty, he volunteered to be transported to Australia.

       

      Watling was sent to the penal colony in Sydney Cove. His artistic skills, which had enabled him to produce convincing forgeries, were quickly put to use. He was assigned to Surgeon General John White, an amateur naturalist. Watling made more than 100 drawings and paintings of flora and fauna. They are considered some of the best early depictions of Australian wildlife by a European artist.

    • The first savings bank

      1810 - TSB

       

      The Revd Henry Duncan opened the world’s first self-supporting savings bank in Ruthwell, Dumfriesshire. He aimed to persuade his poorer parishioners to save for times of ill-health and old age.

       

      This savings bank differed from those that had gone before. It was based on business principles, rather than relying on charitable donations. Interest was paid on deposits, and there were bonuses for regular savers. However, savers who made irregular deposits were fined, and no withdrawals could be made without the approval of the trustees. Duncan’s savings bank model soon spread across Scotland, and into England and Wales.

    • Scottish Widows founded

      1815 - Scottish Widows

       

      The 'Scottish Widows' Fund', Scotland's oldest life assurance office, officially opened for business in January 1815. It went on to become the largest mutual life office in the UK.

       

      Originally proposed in 1811 as a fund for 'widows, sisters and other females' in Scotland, its remit quickly expanded. Instead it was to be 'a General Society, the benefit of which may be extended to all parts of the United Kingdom'. The Fund issued its first life policies in 1814, but for business reasons the directors named 2nd January 1815 as the official start date.

    • Explosion of growth

      1818 - TSB

       

      The idea of the savings bank spread rapidly. Just eight years after Henry Duncan set up his bank, a staggering 465 had been opened across Britain.

       

      These new savings banks followed Duncan’s original business model. They were set up by public-spirited individuals who took on the role of trustees. Having seen the success of savings banks elsewhere, they wished to bring the same benefits to the poor in their own communities. The trustees took on the expenses of opening the bank until it became self-supporting.

    • Highway robbery

      1822 - Lloyds

       

      The original symbol of Lloyds Bank was a beehive. It was introduced in 1822, following a highway robbery in which £4,002 of Taylors & Lloyds’ banknotes were stolen.

       

      The notes were taken from a mail coach, en route from London to Birmingham. Their loss prompted the partners to make their banknotes more distinctive, so that they would be more easily recognised. The symbol of the beehive was chosen, for its connotations of thrift and industry. From that point on, it appeared on banknotes, furniture and stationery.

    • Clerical medical

      1824 - Halifax

       

      The Medical, Clerical and General Life Assurance Society, as it was originally known, was set up in 1824. It was aimed at the middle classes, in particular clergymen and medical practitioners.

       

      The Society differed from other providers. It was prepared to offer life assurance to people in ill health, by adopting the revolutionary practice of 'rating up'. No fewer than nine doctors served on the Board. This gave the Society an expertise that rival companies lacked – the directors could predict life expectancy with far greater accuracy, and set their premiums accordingly.

       

      Clerical Medical was acquired by the Halifax in 1996.

    • Last duel in Scotland

      1826 - Bank of Scotland

       

      On 23rd August 1826, the last duel in Scotland was fought at Cardenbarns, Kirkcaldy. The duellers were David Landale and his bank manager, George Morgan. The banker was killed.

       

      Morgan was the Bank of Scotland agent (manager) at Kirkcaldy. He had challenged Landale, a customer, to a duel following a long-standing quarrel. When Morgan was killed, Landale stood trial for murder. He was acquitted on grounds of self-defence.

       

      Happily, the Morgan-Landale feud was not perpetuated. Morgan's nephew (who later also served as the Bank's Kirkcaldy agent) married one of Landale's daughters.

    • Scottish pound note saved

      1826 - Bank of Scotland

       

      In 1826, Sir Walter Scott lead a campaign to save the Scottish £1 note. Banknotes for under £5 had already been outlawed in England and Wales.

       

      Large numbers of English provincial banks were failing and the Government blamed the proliferation of small notes. It planned to pass similar legislation in Scotland, where the £1 was widely used. There was an outcry. Scott led the protests, writing pamphlets under the name of 'Malachi Malagrowther'.

       

      The campaign was a success and the proposal was dropped. For this reason, Scott's portrait appears on Bank of Scotland notes today.

    • Scottish Widows go South

      1832 - Scottish Widows

       

      In 1832, facing increased competition in Scotland, Scottish Widows decided to expand south of the border. The Fund targeted 'places in England where an extensive Scotch connexion is known to exist'.

       

      Scottish Widows already had a network of nine 'agencies' (branches) across Scotland, stretching from Kelso to Lerwick. Within three years of its decision to expand south, agencies were established in Bradford, Huddersfield, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and London. The peaceful invasion of England was a success.

    • Murder in Newcastle

      1838 - TSB

       

      At two o'clock on a cold December morning in 1838, the fire engines were called to Newcastle Savings Bank. Inside, the bloody body of Joseph Millie, Assistant Actuary, was discovered.

       

      Actuary Archibald Bolam was also found, alive but badly injured. At first glance, it appeared that a robbery had gone badly wrong. However, at the subsequent inquest, evidence suggested that Bolam had in fact murdered his colleague. He had then slit his own throat to deflect suspicion.

       

      The actuary was eventually convicted of manslaughter and transported to Australia. The motive for his crime, however, was never uncovered.

    • The penny bank is born

      1847 - TSB

       

      Penny banks were for people who couldn’t afford to join a regular savings bank. The first was set up in Greenock, Scotland, in 1847.

       

      Most savings banks required a minimum deposit of £1. Penny banks, however, allowed customers to deposit as little as a one penny. Once they had saved a pound, an account would be opened at the parent savings bank. The idea quickly caught on, and penny banks were established up and down the country, in Sunday schools, schools, mechanics’ institutes, and social clubs.

    • Leeds permanent founded

      1848 - Halifax

       

      ‘The Permanent Second Leeds Benefit Building Society’ (later the Leeds Permanent) was founded in 1848. Within ten years, it was the largest building society in the world.

       

      Like many industrial towns, Leeds had a rapidly expanding population and a chronic shortage of housing. Building societies were set up help remedy this. They provided people with funds to build or buy their own homes. The Leeds Permanent replaced an earlier 'terminating' society (i.e. one which closed once all its members were housed). It remained one of Britain's leading building societies until the merger with the Halifax, in 1995.

    • Cheltenham & Gloucester

      1850 - Lloyds 

       

      The Cheltenham & Gloucester Building Society was founded in 1850. For the first 20 years, it had no office of its own, but operated from the Belle Vue Hotel in Cheltenham.

       

      The directors met at the hotel once a month to approve mortgages and accept investments. By the 1890s, the Society was ready to expand. It opened a branch office in Gloucester, and began a programme of acquiring smaller building societies. These acquisitions continued into the 20th century.

       

      In 1995, Cheltenham & Gloucester was itself taken over by Lloyds Bank.

    • Building societies reform

      1850 - Halifax

       

      With the passing of The Great Reform Act in 1832, a number of building societies actively sought to extend the franchise, through the promotion of home ownership.

       

      The Act extended the vote in boroughs to male householders who owned or rented property worth more than £10 a year. The Leeds Permanent was one of the building societies which sought to promote the right to vote. Its first annual report in 1850 records that 'upwards of sixty persons have been placed in a position to claim the franchise, if they think proper, by the aid of this Society alone.'

    • Halifax established

      1852 - Halifax

       

      In 1852, a group of men met at the Old Cock Inn, Halifax, to form the Halifax Permanent Benefit Building Society. This eventually overtook the Leeds as the world's largest building society.

       

      Among the founding fathers was Jonas Dearnley Taylor, a solicitor's clerk. He became the Society's first Secretary, a position he retained for nearly 50 years.

       

      The Halifax enjoyed a hugely successful first year, far exceeding the expectations of its founders. By March 1854, it had 584 members and a further 144 ad hoc depositors. More than £9,000 had been lent, and branches had been opened at Sowerby bridge, Thornton and Queenshead.

    • Bank gets connected

      1853 - Bank of Scotland

       

      In 1853, Bank of Scotland became one of the first Scottish banks to use the new electric telegraph service. To ensure confidentiality, a secret telegraphic code was devised.

       

      Introduced in the 1840s, the telegraph was the 19th century equivalent of e-mail - it allowed instant communication for the first time.

       

      In the early days, telegraphs were sent from public offices. Wary of compromising customer confidentiality, banks developed codes that reduced messages to a few unintelligible words. The Bank of Scotland code included words such as ‘Blossom’, ‘Absinth’ and ‘Bagpipe’. ‘Achilles’ stood for Bank of Scotland’s Head Office.

    • First Halifax mortgage

      1853 - Halifax

       

      On 26th May 1853, Esau Hanson became the first person to get a mortgage from the Halifax Permanent Benefit Building Society.

       

      The mortgage was for the princely sum of £121 – about £7,000 today. Hanson, a local textile manufacturer, used the money to buy land for a house. The loan was repaid over 13 years, at a rate of 5% interest.

       

      Coincidentally, the ground on which his house once stood was repurchased by the Halifax, many years later. It was used for an extension to the Society's head office, in 1988.

    • Lloyds loses Taylor

      1853 - Lloyds

       

      With the death of James Taylor, grandson of one of the founders, the association between the families ended. The bank was renamed Lloyds & Company.

       

      James Taylor’s health had broken down as a result of worries about his business affairs. These were, in fact, largely imaginary. But in 1853 he took his own life. James' son, also called James, declined the offer of a partnership, partly due to his mother’s concerns about him going into commerce. The Taylor family name was removed from the bank’s title.

    • Model housing in Halifax

      1861 - Halifax

       

      In 1861, Edward Akroyd, a wealthy mill owner, started a model housing scheme for workers. He called it 'Akroydon'. The Halifax Permanent Benefit Building Society advanced three quarters of the money.

       

      Akroyd had observed that working class housing in Halifax was 'generally… of an inferior class'. He engaged architect George Gilbert Scott, who produced designs of a very high standard. All homes had two or more bedrooms, gas and running water. Prospective purchasers had only to provide a small deposit; the remainder was lent by the Halifax. Akroydon was one of a number of such schemes in which the Society assisted.

    • TSB faces competition

      1861 - TSB

       

      William Gladstone’s Post Office Savings Bank Act was passed in 1861. Within a year, more than 2,500 Post Office savings banks had been established.

       

      Many of these were in direct competition with existing trustee savings banks. Within ten years, more than 200 TSBs had been forced to close.

       

      However, the remainder survived because of the additional benefits they offered depositors. TSBs paid more interest on savings, and it was easier to make withdrawals. Moreover, their staff were specialists, whereas Post Office officials had many other duties to perform.

    • Lloyds gets shareholders

      1865 - Lloyds

       

      After 100 years in business, Lloyds & Co. converted from a private partnership to a joint-stock bank. It became Lloyds Banking Company Ltd.

       

      Lloyds had only opened its first branch the previous year. However, serious expansion was just around the corner. With 148 shareholders now investing in the company, its capital base was much stronger. This resulted in a period of unprecedented expansion. Over the next 50 years, Lloyds took over more than 50 competitors.

    • BOS in London

      1867 - Bank of Scotland

       

      London was fast becoming an international financial centre, and in the 1860s, Scottish banks began to open offices there. Bank of Scotland established a permanent office in 1867.

       

      The Bank had originally opened a London office in 1696, a year after its foundation. Its 36 London-based shareholders met there. But the office had closed by 1703, and it was another 164 years before Bank of Scotland re-established its presence. 

       

      Initially located in Old Broad Street, the Bank moved in the 1890s to extremely grand, purpose-built premises in Bishopsgate. These were designed by architect W. W. Gwyther.

    • Women keep their savings

      1870 - TSB

       

      In 1870, the Married Women’s Property Act was passed. For the first time, married women were allowed to keep their own savings.

       

      Prior to this, any money that a woman held on marriage automatically became the property of her husband. The new Act allowed women to keep their savings, up to the value of £200 – about £9,000 today. Unlike the commercial banks, savings banks had always attracted female savers in large numbers. With the passing of the Act, the demand for savings accounts was even greater.

    • Scotland calling

      1881 - Bank of Scotland

       

      Alexander Graham Bell patented his design for the telephone in 1876. In 1881, Bank of Scotland became the first Scottish bank to utilise this new-fangled technology.

       

      Telephone exchanges were opened in both Edinburgh and Glasgow in 1879. Three years later, Bank of Scotland instructed the National Telephone Company to install a 'wire' in its head office in Edinburgh. The cost was £15 a year – about £700 today.

       

      Within months, the branch manager at Glasgow requested a telephone too. The directors agreed, on condition that the instrument was not used for the 'management of money transactions'.

    • Inherits the black horse

      1884 - Lloyds

       

      Lloyds Bank inherited the famous black horse symbol in 1884. This sign dates back to the 17th century, when it was used by a goldsmith in the City of London.

       

      Lloyds adopted the black horse with the take-over of Lombard Street bankers Barnetts, Hoares & Co. The sign of the black horse had originally hung above the shop of Lombard Street goldsmith Humphrey Stokes, from as early as 1677.

       

      The Bank's first symbol, the beehive, continued to be used alongside the black horse until the early 20th century. It still appears on some bank buildings.

    • Unforgeable bankotes?

      1885 - Bank of Scotland

       

      In 1885, a chemistry professor at Edinburgh University produced a series of Bank of Scotland notes which were 'protected against photographic forgery'. But three years later, forgeries appeared.

       

      Professor Crum Brown had found the perfect combination of colour, ink and design to prevent photographic forgery: but it couldn’t stop forgery by more traditional methods.

       

      The 1888 forgeries were traced to 74 year-old John Hamilton Gray Mitchell, a talented artist and engraver. His fakes were excellent, flawed only by the quality of the paper. Mitchell was sentenced to seven years, but only served one because of failing health.

    • Embezzlement!

      1886 - TSB

       

      The savings bank movement was rocked in 1886 by the discovery of a major fraud. The actuary at Cardiff Savings Bank had embezzled £30,000 - 15% of the total deposits.

       

      The fraud was only discovered on the actuary’s death. The Bank’s trustees handled the investigation poorly, enraging depositors by refusing to repay the money in full. The crisis escalated, and the whole savings banks movement came under scrutiny, from the press and public alike. In the wake of the scandal, the TSB Association was set up, partly to ensure any future crises were properly managed.

    • TSB association

      1887 - TSB

       

      In 1887, the Trustee Savings Banks Association was established. This was partly a response to the Cardiff Savings Bank fraud the previous year.

       

      The Association had two aims: to protect the interests of depositors, and to increase co-operation among savings banks. Initially, only 26 banks signed up. But the Association's role steadily grew as more banks joined. By the late 1920s, it had become a registered limited company. It also published the 'Gazette', a magazine for staff working in the savings banks.

    • Twining takeover

      1892 - Lloyds

       

      The Twining family, famous for its tea business, also established a bank. This was eventually acquired by Lloyds in 1892.

       

      In 1706, Thomas Twining opened the UK’s very first tea shop on the Strand, in London. The firm later diversified into banking, offering services mainly to family and friends. This side of the business grew, and in 1824, the bank was established as a separate entity. The Twining family was still heavily involved some 70 years later, when the bank was acquired by Lloyds.

  • A bank for Scotland

    1695 - Bank of Scotland

     

    Bank of Scotland was founded by an Act of the Scottish Parliament, on 17th July 1695. It is Scotland's first and oldest bank.

     

    The Bank was set up primarily to develop Scotland's trade with England and the Low Countries. It began business in February 1696, with a working capital of £120,000 Scots (£10,000 sterling). Most of its 172 shareholders (including 36 based in London) were from Scotland's political and mercantile elite. They hoped to create a stable banking system, offering long-term credit and security, for merchants and landowners alike.

  • Paper money launched

    1696 - Bank of Scotland

     

    In 1696, Bank of Scotland became the first European commercial bank to successfully issue a paper currency. Its earliest banknotes were in denominations of £5, £10, £20, £50 and £100.

     

    None of these first notes survives, but this one from 1716 gives an idea of their appearance. The value is expressed in 'pounds Scots'. Scotland had its own unit of currency until 1707, with £12 Scots equal to £1 sterling. Though abolished by the Act of Union, 'pounds Scots' continued to be used as an expression of money for many years. The Bank's note issue continues to this day.

  • Coat of arms granted

    1701 - Bank of Scotland

     

    Bank of Scotland was granted a coat of arms, in March 1701. It features a shield bearing the Saltire cross, supported by the twin figures of 'Justice' and 'Plenty'.

     

    Around the cross are four gold 'bezants' representing money (coins). The motto 'Tanto Uberior ' means 'so much the more plentiful' or 'the more to prosper'. It is from these arms that the Bank's present-day logo derives.

    The Bank's office was down a dark and narrow alley in Edinburgh's Old Town. The arms were used to decorate the signboard outside, identifying the business and attracting potential customers.

  • Bank under siege

    1745 - Bank of Scotland

     

    On September 1745, Edinburgh was occupied by Bonnie Prince Charlie's Jacobite army. Alarmed by these events, Bank of Scotland transferred its cash and valuables to Edinburgh Castle for safekeeping.

     

    In anticipation of the invasion, the Bank had already stopped lending, and destroyed a large number of its banknotes. The Jacobites occupied the city for two months, during which time the Bank ceased business entirely. But Edinburgh Castle (with the Bank's cash safely inside) was never breached by the Rebels.. The Jacobites were eventually defeated at Culloden in 1746.

  • British Linen Company

    1976 - Bank of Scotland

     

    The British Linen Company (later the British Linen Bank) was established by a Royal Charter from George II, in 1746.

     

    The Company's purpose was the promotion of the linen industry in Scotland. By the 1750s, however, the Company had moved into banking. This dismayed its two rivals, Bank of Scotland and The Royal Bank. For years, they refused even to recognise it as a bank.

     

    In 1906, the British Linen finally changed its name from 'Company' to 'Bank'. It merged with Bank of Scotland in 1971.

1901 - 2015

    • English country banknotes

      1921 - Lloyds

       

      The Somerset firm of Fox, Fowler & Co. was the last country bank in England and Wales to issue its own banknotes. It only stopped with the Lloyds takeover, in 1921.

       

      The bank was established in 1787, and began issuing notes soon after. Provincial banks had to apply for a licence for this, although any banks within 65 miles of the Bank of England were prohibited. The licence, however, did not act as a guarantee - if a bank collapsed, its notes would, literally, not be worth the paper they were written on.

    • Logo for savings bank

      1922 - TSB

       

      To help unify the savings bank movement, and to give it a national profile, the TSB Association adopted an emblem in 1922. All TSBs were encouraged to use it.

       

      The emblem chosen by the TSBA was that of a keep – a fortified stronghold or castle. Underneath, in red, was the word ‘SECURITY’. The message to savers was clear - their money was safe with the trustee savings banks. The oak leaves and acorns around the sides symbolised growth from small beginnings – by paying in as little as a pound a week, people would see their savings grow.

    • Army agency aquired

      1923 - Lloyds

       

      Cox’s & King’s had been bankers to the British Army since 1758. Lloyds Bank took over the business in 1923, acquiring branches in India, Egypt and Burma.

       

      The firm began when Richard Cox was appointed army agent, in 1758. As such, he was responsible for the payment of officers, as well as the provision of clothing and marketing of commissions. Much later, the firm set up branches in the Far East, to serve British garrisons stationed there. During the First World War, its Charing Cross branch stayed open 24 hours a day to cash cheques for officers returning from the Front.

    • South American connection

      1923 - Lloyds

       

      In 1923, Lloyds merged two South American banks to form the Bank of London & South America (BOLSA).

       

      The London & Brazilian Bank and the London & River Plate Bank were both established in 1862. They were founded to provide banking facilities for the growing mercantile trade that dominated British interests in South America. Both had head offices located in London, and were financed primarily by British investors. Lloyds Bank always had a significant stake in BOLSA, but did not own it outright until 1971.

    • Bank seeks investors

      1928 - Bank of Scotland

       

      In the face of a financial downturn, Scottish clearing banks made strenuous attempts to attract new customers. They slashed the minimum deposit required from £10 to one shilling.

       

      The 1920s were bleak, with mass unemployment and a struggling economy. Scottish banks sought out new markets, including small savers. From 1928, banks offered deposit accounts, accepting as little as a shilling. This was a considerable reduction on their previous minimum of £10 – about £300 today! However, even these measures failed to attract many new depositors – people remained loyal to their savings banks and building societies.

    • The wedding

      1928 - Halifax

       

      In 1928, the Halifax Permanent and the Halifax Equitable merged to create the Halifax Building Society. This was five times larger than any other society in the UK.

       

      The merger was marked by the publication of a booklet that celebrated the 'marriage' of the two. It proudly announced: 'A great event in building society history is briefly told in the following pages... on the First day of February, 1928, the two greatest Building Societies of the world... became legally united into one corporate body'.

    • Mechanised accounting

      1928 - Lloyds

       

      Banking methods remained largely unchanged for centuries. But in 1928, a machine was developed that revolutionised accounting. Balancing the books became faster and cheaper.

       

      Business growth and rising costs meant that more efficient and cost-effective processes were needed. The new accounting machines could complete the work more quickly, using fewer staff. Women were employed to operate them because they could be paid less than their male counterparts. By the end of 1929, City Office in London, and five other branches had switched over. But the last branch was only mechanised in 1962.

    • Model housing

      1933 - Halifax

       

      In 1933, construction began on a housing scheme for the steel workers of Stewarts & Lloyds at Corby, Kettering. The Halifax advanced 90% of the funds.

       

      The Corby estate was one of a number of housing schemes that the Halifax financed under the Housing (Financial Provisions) Act, 1933. This sought to address the critical housing shortage in Britain during the inter-war years. Building societies were called on to provide cheap loans for builders, which were guaranteed by central government and local authorities. The Halifax funded 60% of all the houses built – some 14,000 in total.

    • Sponsoring a spitfire

      1940 - Lloyds

       

      During the Second World War, some 12,000 Lloyds Bank staff chipped in to purchase a Spitfire for the war effort. It was fittingly named 'The Black Horse'.

       

      Within months, staff subscriptions reached more than £7,000, with donations averaging 12 shillings per person. The Spitfire went into action in March 1941. Sadly, though,  in July 1942 it collided mid-air with another Spitfire, and crashed near Weston-Super-Mare in Somerset. Fortunately, the pilot bailed out and survived, but the Black Horse was lost.

    • Wanted: female customers

      1947 - Lloyds

       

      In 1947, Lloyds launched a series of advertisements aimed specifically at women. This was a largely untapped market, as many women had never had a bank account of their own.

       

      The campaign was aimed at housewives and business women alike. The adverts included straplines such as ‘…and send the account to me’ and ‘…then you won’t require my husband’s signature?’. One even suggested that the fact that women were seeking a new level of financial independence was ‘a tribute to the husbands' good judgement as well as to the intelligence of their wives’.

    • The Olympic Games

      1948 - Lloyds

       

      Lloyds Bank installed a temporary branch at the site of the London 1948 Olympic Games. It offered the usual banking services, and was staffed by linguists.

       

      Other members of staff were actively involved in the Games too. The manager of Teddington Branch was responsible for ensuring that the Olympic Flame remained alight. He followed the Torch bearers in his Morris Minor, from Kent to Wembley, with a hurricane lamp. Its flame had been burning continuously since leaving Greece several weeks earlier. Should any Torch fail, it could be relit from the lamp.

    • Married women can work

      1949 - Lloyds

       

      In 1949, Lloyds Bank abolished the marriage bar. This had required all women to resign on marriage. The Bank also granted female staff ‘permanent’ status.

       

      This meant, for the first time, that women could think of their job at Lloyds as a career. Until then, it was just a means of earning a living before they got married. In 1924, one young clerk had successfully concealed her marriage for a whole year. However, on finding out, the Bank dismissed her. Women were also to be classed as permanent staff – they had previously been referred to as ‘supplementary’.

    • Deposits reach £1bl

      1951 - TSB

       

      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.

    • The union

      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.

    • The computer revolution

      1959 - Bank of Scotland

       

      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!

    • In the news

      1960 - Bank of Scotland

       

      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 TBS

      1961 - TBS

       

      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

    • Drive-in banking

      1961 - Lloyds

       

      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

      1962 - 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.

    • The bank goes mobile

      1963 - Bank of Scotland

       

      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.

    • Scotcash

      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

      1971 - Lloyds

       

      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

      1972 - Lloyds

       

      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.

    • The 'oil bank'

      1974 - Bank of Scotland

       

      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

      1976 - TSB

       

      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.

    • Loans for homes

      1979 - Bank of Scotland

       

      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.

    • Advent of home banking

      1985 - Bank of Scotland

       

      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.

    • Flotation!

      1986 - TSB

       

      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 arrives

      1987 - TSB 

       

      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.

    • Banks& building societies

      1995 - Lloyds

       

      In August 1995, Lloyds acquired Cheltenham & Gloucester Building Society. This was the first ever association between a bank and a building society.

       

      Since its foundation in 1850, Cheltenham & Gloucester had taken over more than 50 competitors. It was now one of the UK's largest mortgage providers. But before Lloyds could acquire it, C&G had to demutualise. Its members voted in favour, and each received a windfall payment.

    • Lloyds TSB created

      1995 - Lloyds TSB

       

      In December 1995, Lloyds Bank and TSB merged to form Lloyds TSB. However, it was another four years before the new bank became a high street name.

       

      By early 1999, only a handful of branches displayed the new Lloyds TSB livery. But overnight, on 28th June, the remaining 2,380 were rebranded, in a military-style operation. All branches were rebadged internally and externally - this involved nine miles of fascia signs, 18 miles of neon tube and 66,000 new merchandising units. Despite a fire at the warehouse where the new signs were stored, the operation was a success.

    • From Society to PLC

      1997 - Halifax

       

      On 2nd June 1997, the Halifax Building Society converted to plc status. The building society ceased to exist, and the new organisation became known simply as ‘The Halifax’.

       

      Of the members who voted, 97% were in favour of conversion. This resulted in the largest single extension of private share ownership in the UK - more than seven million people participated.

       

       The conversion was the culmination of a period of significant mergers and expansion. In 1995, the Halifax merged with the Leeds Permanent Building Society. The following year it purchased the life assurance company, Clerical Medical.

    • Birmingham Midshires

      1999 - Halifax

       

      Birmingham Midshires joined the Halifax in April 1999. Formerly a Midlands-based building society, it retained its own distinctive brand and product range.

       

      Birmingham Midshires was formed in 1986, with the amalgamation of the Birmingham & Bridgwater and the Midshires building societies. Both had roots going back to the mid-19th century, and were themselves the result of the cumulative mergers of some 50 building societies.

       

       Based in Wolverhampton, Birmingham Midshires is today a separate division of Bank of Scotland plc. It is known for its specialised lending, such as buy-to-let mortgages.

    • Scottish Widows purchased

      2000 - Scottish Widows

       

      On 3rd March 2000, Lloyds TSB completed the purchase of Scottish Widows. With this acquisition, the Bank inherited one of the strongest brands in the insurance industry.

       

      Scottish Widows was established in 1815, and was Scotland’s first mutual life office. It grew to be one of the largest providers of life assurance and investment products in the UK. Following its acquisition by Lloyd TSB, Scottish Widows’ products became available throughout the Lloyds TSB branch network.

    • HBOS PLC

      2001 - HBOS

       

      HBOS plc was established in September 2001, with the merger of Halifax plc and Bank of Scotland. It became the fifth largest financial services company in the UK.

       

      Launched as 'the new force', HBOS set out to be the fastest growing financial services business in the UK, by delivering innovation and value for money. Initially it was very successful, becoming the UK's largest savings and mortgage provider. However, in 2008, problems emerged in its lending portfolio. These, along with the 'credit crunch', saw HBOS taken over by Lloyds TSB. The new company was named Lloyds Banking Group

    • LBG created

      2009 - Lloyds Banking Group

       

      In January 2009, in the midst of a global financial crisis, Lloyds TSB took over HBOS plc.

       

      The new company instantly became the largest retail bank in the UK. Lloyds Banking Group today serves more than 25 million customers, and brings together a host of well-known brands. These include Bank of Scotland, Birmingham Midshires, Cheltenham & Gloucester, Halifax, Lloyds TSB, and Scottish Widows. Each has its own rich and unique heritage . . .

    • London 2012

      2012 - Lloyds TSB

       

      Lloyds TSB was the Official Banking and Insurance Partner of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.

       

      The Olympic Games were last held in London in 1948. Taking place shortly after the Second World War, they were called the ‘Austerity Games’. Just over 4,000 athletes from 59 nations had competed in 19 sports. The 2012 Games attracted more than 10,000 athletes from 204 nations. They took part in almost 300 events.

    • The return of Lloyds Bank

      2013 - Lloyds Bank

       

      On 9th September 2013 Lloyds TSB once again became two separate banks.

       

      The familiar black horse logo was given a makeover for the relaunch of Lloyds Bank on the high street. And more than 630 branches were brought together across Britain to form the new TSB.

    • A milestone year

      2015 - Lloyds Banking Group

       

      2015 is a milestone year for Lloyds Banking Group. We are marking the 200th anniversary of Scottish Widows, the 250th anniversary of Lloyds Bank and the 30th year of the Lloyds Bank Foundations.

       

      The strength of the Group comes from its rich and diverse heritage, and its iconic brands.  Launching the next phase of its strategy to become Britain’s Best Bank for customers, the Group remains committed to its core purpose of Helping Britain Prosper.  We are proud to have supported local people, businesses and communities for more than three centuries.

  • The Enoch era

    1903 - Halifax

     

    The Halifax's first Secretary, J. D. Taylor, died in 1902. The following year, Enoch Hill replaced him. Under Hill's guidance, the Society grew from a local to a national institution.

     

    Until the 1900s, the activities of the Halifax were concentrated chiefly in Yorkshire. But Hill was keen for the Society to grow, and embarked on an ambitious programme of expansion. The first branch in southern England was opened at Shaftesbury, Dorset, in 1919. An office in London followed five years later. By the mid 1930s, the Halifax network covered the whole of the UK.

  • Expansion overseas

    1911 - Lloyds

     

    With the takeover of Armstrong & Co. in 1911, Lloyds Bank acquired a presence in France. This marked the start of overseas expansion.

     

    Armstrong & Co. was based in Paris and Le Havre. In acquiring this business, Lloyds took its first step into continental Europe, and Lloyds Bank (France) was formed. Entry into France paved the way for further growth. In 1920, Lloyds became the first British bank to open a branch in Switzerland. This laid the foundations for what would later become Lloyds Bank Europe.

  • Lloyds in London

    1912 - Lloyds

     

    Lloyds Bank made the move from Birmingham to the City of London in 1912. The new Head Office was located in Lombard Street, at the sign of the black horse…

     

    Following the acquisition of Barnetts, Hoares & Co. in 1884, Lloyds Bank had gained a foothold in London, and inherited the black horse symbol. For some years, the Bank operated from both London and Birmingham. But in 1912, the decision was made to transfer all head office operations to London. A stunning art deco building was opened in Lombard Street, in 1930. This served as Head Office until 2003.

  • 'Titanic' disaster

    1912 - Scottish Widows

     

    On 14th April 1912, the world's largest passenger steamship, the 'Titanic', hit an iceberg and sank. Some 1,500 lives were lost, two of whom were insured with Scottish Widows.

     

    The two people concerned were a bandsman – possibly employed on the ship - and a valet to one of the passengers. They had been insured for £100 and £200 respectively – around £5,700 and £11,400 today. Their status meant they had little chance of getting onto a lifeboat. Only 12% of the men in second and third class survived, compared with more than a third of those in first class.

  • World's biggest

    1913 - Halifax

     

    In 1913, the Halifax celebrated its Diamond Jubilee. With assets of more than £3 million, it was now the largest building society in the world.

     

    The Halifax's pre-eminent position was largely due to the dynamism of its Secretary, Enoch Hill. Appointed in 1903, Hill was the driving force behind the Society's radical expansion of its branch network. He also introduced innovative products, such as Paid-Up Shares, and established a Penny Savings Department. As a result, the Halifax drew in small savers, and successfully enticed customers away from the savings banks.

  • First female clerks

    1914 - Lloyds

     

    With the outbreak of the First World War, Lloyds employed women as clerks for the first time. They replaced men who had joined the armed services.

     

    Six women were taken on at the start of the War. By the end, there were more than 2,000 on the payroll. However, this change was not welcomed by all. Many felt that the job was too taxing for women, and that they should look for work where ‘gentleness and sympathy are called for’. The end of the War also marked the end of the general recruitment of women.

  • Capital & Counties

    1918 - Lloyds

     

    The acquisition of Capital & Counties Bank was the largest takeover Lloyds had ever seen. In fact, it was not matched until the merger with TSB in 1995.

     

    Capital & Counties was one of the first banks with a nationwide branch network. By 1918, however, it was falling behind the times, and felt compelled to accept Lloyds' offer. Merging the two banks was a major undertaking - it was not until 1934 that the Capital & Counties Board ceased operations as a separate entity.

  • Halifax on holiday

    1920 - Halifax

     

    In the summer of 1920, the Halifax took its staff on holiday. Some 30 members, including Secretary Enoch Hill, took a ten day vacation to Devon in an open charabanc.

     

    Organised staff holidays were the brainchild of William Fawcett, editor of the staff magazine, 'Round the Table'. He recognised their potential for 'cultivating a spirit of good fellowship'. The Devon trip was a big success. Others followed, including cruises to Norway, the Baltic and the Canary Islands. Continental tours were also taken to Belgium, Holland, Switzerland and Germany. The last staff holiday was in 1983.

     

     

Find out more about the history of our brands

Lloyds Bank

Lloyds Bank began as Taylors & Lloyds in Birmingham, in 1765. 

Find out moreLloyds Bank

Halifax

Founded in 1852, the Halifax is one of the UK's best known companies.

Find out moreHalifax

Bank of Scotland

Bank of Scotland was founded in 1695, by an Act of the Scottish Parliament - making it Scotland's first and oldest bank.

Find out moreBank of Scotland
 

The Museum on the Mound

Our museum is located in Edinburgh, in the Scottish Headquarters of Lloyds Banking Group. It charts the history of banking in Scotland, and explores the theme of money in all its shapes and forms.

Arrange a visitArrange a visit