Some of you will have heard that they are planning to demolish the old Barclays Bank building on Broadway, Wickford, and build a five storey block of flats.
Now would be a good time to collect together memories and information about the Bank. Who worked there? When did it close etc? We have been told that an old cottage was knocked down to make way for the bank but this series of photos seems to show the cottage was still there after the bank was built, and could still be there now, but without the weatherboarding. These photos may help to bring back memories. Keep upto date with news on the future of these building by visiting the facebook page “Save the Wickford Broadway buildings from demolition.”
From an unknown source:
The Bank House dates from the early 20th century, around 1910, and was the home of Wickford’s first bank, known at that time as Barclay & Co. It is thought that the small white building to the left of the red brick building is of much earlier construction, and was a weatherboard cottage that housed a tea room and provided a base for holding inquests.
During World War II the Bank House was rented out to H.M. Secretary of State for War, and was used as the HQ of the 1st Essex Battalion Home Guard.
Peter Finch, in his 1951 history of the Essex Home Guard, ‘Warmen Courageous’, wrote “From Wickford, Colonel Burton sent out the first Local Defence Volunteers (LDV) patrol ever to operate. Their uneventful, but exhausting, exploit was filmed by a news-reel company and photographed for the Press. How self-consciously the volunteers posed before the cameras!”
We do not know if the newsreel still exists.