Local Banks in Surrey

The Bank of England was started in 1694.  Prior to this, a number of merchants and goldsmiths had started providing banking facilities and had gone on to form the first private banks in England.

Until the mid-eighteenth century, the majority of private banks were located in the city of London. The politician Edmund Burke, in 1750, stated that there were "not above a dozen bankers, outside London, in the country". By 1798 there were just over 300 country bankers.

Until 1826, all private banks were partnership banks which, under common law, meant that the partners were jointly and severally liable for the whole of the partnership debts.

Those banks situated outside London were known as country or provincial banks. Nearly all provincial banks would have had a London agent, who would deal with stockbrokers, bill discounters and acceptance houses on their behalf. He would also give advice and act as a lender of last resort. Around 1770 the London banks ceased issuing their own notes and instead issued Bank of England notes.

Many provincial banks were started by businessmen as a means of generating capital for investment.  The printing and issuing of banknotes was, effectively, borrowing money for free and lending it at interest.  Excessive banknote issue combined with economic worries led to the demise of many.

The table below lists those private or provincial banks which were started in Surrey market towns.

Town  Bank Trading Name  Main Partnership(s) Dates Fate
 CHERTSEY   Chertsey Bank  La Coste & Co. 1807-1867 Absorbed into Ashby's Bank
    Godley Bank  Willats & Son1833-1837 Failed due to death of proprietor
 COBHAM    Alexander Raby & Co. 1801-<1810 Ceased trading
 CROYDON  Union Bank of Croydon  Chasemore & Robinson 1838-1891 Taken over by Union Bank of London
   Farrows Credit Bank  Farrow & Co.1904-1920  Financial failure
     Phillipson & Co. <1811-1816  Financial failure
     Harman & Tait<1808-1816  Financial failure
     Miller & Co.1808-1811  Financial failure
   Surry Bank  Watney, Moore & Smith <1808-1816  Financial failure
 DORKING  Darking Bank  Piper & Dewdney 1803-1825  Financial failure
   Peters Bank  Peters & Co.1809-1819  Financial failure
 EGHAM  Egham Bank  Wetton & Co.1830-1851  Failed due to death of proprietor and
 taken over by West Surrey Bank
 FARNHAM  Farnham Bank  Smith & Co.
 Stevens & Co
 Knight & Co
1793-1886  Taken over by Capital & Counties Bank
   Farnham Old Bank  Cock & Lamport 1793-1817  Financial failure
   Farnham New Bank  Wilkins, Trimmer, Page & Co.1797-1797  Sundry issuer
 GODALMING  Godalmin & Surrey Bank  Horton, Haydon, Waistell & Hollands <1792-<1800  Ceased trading
   Godalming Bank  Moline & Woods 1808-1841  Ceased trading
   Godalming Bank  Mellersh & Co. 1814-1835  Taken over by Capital & Counties Bank
 GUILDFORD  Guildford Bank  Haydon & Smallpeice 1765-1883  Taken over by Capital & Counties Bank
   Guildford Bank  Sparkes & French 1833-1840  Financial failure
   West Surrey Bank  Mangles, Keen & Co. 1836-1864  Merged with Burgess & Co. of Ramsgate
 to form the South-Eastern Banking Co.
 KINGSTON  Surrey Bank  Knight, Haydon & Shrubsole 1792-1894  Taken over by Parrs Bank
 REIGATE  Reigate Bank  Nash & Neale1808-1850  Financial Failure
 RICHMOND    Brown & Co.?-1810  Ceased trading
 SOUTHWARK  Southwark Bank  Bloxham & Co.1795-1805  Financial Failure
     Smith & Co.>1804-1817+  Ceased trading
     Young & Son1795-1849  Taken over by London & Westminster Bank
 STAINES  Middlesex & Surrey Bank  Coggan, Morris & Co.1810-1813  Failed due to death of proprietor
   Staines Bank  Ashby & Co.1796-1904  Taken over by Barclays Bank
 CAMBERLEY  Reading Bank  Simonds & Co.1814-1913  Taken over by Barclays Bank