Glyn, Mills & Co

Glyn, Mills & Co (1753-1970), founded in London, was a past constituent of The Royal Bank of Scotland.

Brief history

Founded by three City gentlemen - Joseph Vere, Richard Glyn and Thomas Hallifax - this private bank opened at 70 Lombard Street, London in 1753, trading as Vere, Glyn & Hallifax. By 1800 the bank had moved to Birchin Lane. It prospered, developing a large business as London agent for many of the growing provincial banks, providing banking facilities for more than 200 of the new railway companies and handling the important Canadian financial agency.

In 1841 Glyn, Mills took over many of the customer accounts of Ladbroke & Co upon that bank’s closure and from 1851 was known as Glyn, Mills & Co. In 1864 it acquired the business of Curries & Co, and was restyled Glyn, Mills, Currie & Co. In 1885, with a paid-up capital of £1 million, Glyn, Mills became the first private bank to publish a half-yearly balance sheet, registering as a joint-stock company under the title of Glyn, Mills, Currie & Co with a capital of £1½ million. In 1890 it played a major role in preventing the collapse of merchant bankers Baring Brothers, thereby saving a number of London's financial institutions from ruin. By that time the bank had established many international links and was handling share issues for major companies and governments at home and abroad.

Glyn, Mills took over Holt & Co in 1923, after which the firm was renamed Glyn, Mills, Currie, Holt & Co, and Child & Co in 1924, whence it was known as Glyn, Mills & Co. A prestigious new head office building in Lombard Street was completed in 1933.

However, with war looming, Glyn, Mills’ private partnership status and relatively small size had made it unviable and in 1939 it was acquired by The Royal Bank of Scotland. Glyn, Mills continued to trade separately, managed by its own board of directors and offering its own range of services. Glyn, Mills acquired the banking businesses of the British Overseas Bank and Anglo-International Bank in 1944, and of A Ruffer & Sons in 1946. In 1965 Glyn, Mills Finance Co was established to take on large, long-term deposits at competitive rates of interest.

In 1969 The Royal Bank of Scotland was restructured and Glyn, Mills & Co became a direct subsidiary of a new holding company, National & Commercial Banking Group. The following year the holding company's subsidiaries in England and Wales - Glyn, Mills & Co, Williams Deacon's Bank, and the English and Welsh branches of The National Bank - merged to form Williams & Glyn's Bank.

Detailed list of name changes

  • Vere, Glyn & Hallifax 1753-66
  • Glyn & Hallifax 1766-73
  • Hallifax, Mills, Glyn & Mitton 1773-6
  • Hallifax, Mills, Glyn, Mills & Mitton 1776-82
  • Hallifax, Glyn, Mills & Mitton 1782-9
  • Glyn, Mills & Mitton 1789-96
  • Glyn, Mills, Hallifax & Co 1796-1808
  • Glyn, Mills, Hallifax, Glyn & Co 1808-13
  • Glyn, Mills, Hallifax, Glyn, Mills & Co 1813-19
  • Glyn, Mills, Hallifax, Glyn, Mills & Glyn 1819-22
  • Glyn, Mills, Hallifax, Glyn & Co 1822-6
  • Glyn, Hallifax, Mills & Co 1826-51
  • Glyn, Mills & Co 1851-64
  • Glyn, Mills, Currie & Co 1864-1923
  • Glyn, Mills, Currie, Holt & Co 1923-4
  • Glyn, Mills & Co 1924-70

Published histories

  • A building for bankers. The story of 67 Lombard Street (London: privately published by The Royal Bank of Scotland, 1998)
  • R Fulford, Glyn's 1753-1953: Six generations in Lombard Street (London: Macmillan, 1953)
  • E Gore Browne, The history of the house of Glyn, Mills & Co (London: privately published, 1933)

Summary of our archive holdings

Our archival records of Glyn, Mills & Co have the reference code GM and TB.

For help understanding words used here, check our glossary of banking record types (PDF 24KB).

Partnership/corporate records

  • partnership agreements 1760-1879
  • partners' personal and business papers 1758-1933
  • account book, Bank of England 1772
  • agreement re disposal of partners’ shares 1813
  • correspondence with National Bank of Scotland incl notarial copy of 1831 National Bank of Scotland charter 1831-63
  • correspondence with Indian agent 1843-58
  • papers of bank secretary 1854-1930
  • merger papers: Curries & Co 1864, British Overseas Bank 1924, 1944, Anglo-International Bank Ltd 1944-5, The Royal Bank of Scotland 1939
  • register of partners 1885-1936
  • memorandum and articles of association 1885-1926, 1939
  • board and general meeting agenda books 1885-1946
  • general meeting minute books 1885-1970
  • partners’ minute books 1885-1975
  • stock ledger 1885-1984
  • general arrangements book 1886-1924
  • annual reports: railway and transfer office 1890-1921, town office 1896-1936
  • partners' dividend receipts 1895-1930
  • monthly board statistical reports 1923-35
  • certificates of incorporation, registration and change of name 1923-63
  • dividend notices books 1925-39
  • registers of directors and secretaries 1932-79
  • board and finance committee attendance book 1935-1971
  • draft minutes of the Three Banks Group Joint Advisory Committee 1946-53
  • summaries of the chairman's daily conferences 1950-65
  • files re future strategy 1959-70
  • committee meeting minutes: salaries 1963-4, general management 1964-9
  • letter to London assurance re possible merger 1965

Financial records

  • exchequer bills bought book 1819-61
  • periodical returns book 1819-1935
  • account books re discounts 1824-7
  • lists of authorised signatories 1838, 1931
  • commission accounts with brokers 1839
  • weekly Bank of England returns: discount office 1844-1910, banking department 1919-40
  • guarantee books 1846-1906
  • memoranda book re corresponding banks 1859-1909
  • balances books: weekly 1864-1941, annual 1868-1938, town office 1881-1941, country office 1929-37
  • ledgers: expenses 1866-1934, investment 1867-1918, general 1935-8
  • investment accounts books 1867-1934
  • valuation of investments ledgers 1868-1934
  • loans and discounts daily summary books 1868-1940
  • foreign exchanges at London book 1873-1901
  • unpaid discounted bills book 1876-1938
  • housekeeping book 1878-99
  • profit and loss abstracts 1881-1935
  • half-yearly balance sheets 1885-1945
  • stock certificate books 1885-1970
  • profit and loss ledgers 1889-1934
  • investments books 1891-1933
  • money at call with brokers books 1895-1935
  • investment summary ledgers 1897-1943
  • brokers bills book 1909-39
  • interest rate book 1910-32
  • discounts book 1918-27
  • statistics books 1919-36, 1950-67
  • weekly errors book 1920-33
  • monthly statements of assets and liabilities 1921-41
  • treasury bills bought book c.1923
  • papers re income tax 1924-34
  • private ledger 1924-48
  • coin with cashiers book 1925-39
  • brokers loans books 1928-40
  • journal of transfers 1935-56
  • reports and accounts 1939-64

Legal records

  • solicitors' invoices and bills of charges 1754-1918
  • papers re alleged payment stoppage 1840
  • papers re fraudulent letters of credit 1840-1
  • solicitors' charges book 1867-1945
  • scrapbook re forgeries 1878-81
  • forged cheques 1882, 1933
  • bank's solicitors’ letterbooks 1884-1920

Customer records

  • correspondence from customers 1755-(1915)
  • papers of John Blagrove jnr re estates in Jamaica, West Indies 1756-75: source overview (PDF 33KB)
  • bonds and share certificates 1771-(1915)
  • customer passbooks 1773-1819
  • bills of exchange 1777-1897
  • cheques and cheque forms 1778-1923
  • papers re estate of Nathaniel Bayly, West Indian plantation owner, 1780-1827: source overview (PDF 27KB)
  • notes of banks for which Glyn Mills acted as agent 1781-1940s
  • indemnity bond 1785-96
  • executorship papers 1791-1832
  • agency correspondence from country banks 1794-1914
  • records of tax collection, Cities of London and Westminster, the Inns of Court and the County of Middlesex 1795-1808: source overview (PDF 32KB)
  • bad debts book 1796-1821
  • customer ledgers 1800-3, 1814-5, 1824
  • power of attorney to bank 1802, 1840-53
  • bills of exchange 1777-1897
  • insurance policies 1803-84
  • list of country bankers 1806
  • box books c.1810s-(1915)
  • banknotes, Bank of England and country banks 1813-84
  • papers re canal and railway company shares 1819-(1915)
  • signed balances book, town office 1822
  • papers re foreign correspondent banks and letters of credit 1828-40
  • draft 1829
  • trustee papers 1836-60s
  • papers re accounts of railway companies and other banks 1839-54, 1856-7, 1884, 1897
  • papers re individuals and banks in Canada and Canadian debentures 1847-73
  • letterbooks: 1848-(1915), PC Glyn 1862-69, GG Glyn 1863-66, BW Currie 1870-93
  • letters of hypothecation 1850-(1915)
  • opinion book 1852-60
  • customer notebook, B W Currie 1853-62
  • papers of Flensburg, Husum & Tönning Railway Co (Royal Danish Railway) 1853-65: source overview (PDF 28KB)
  • loans for customers book 1854-5
  • memoranda books re correspondent banks 1859-1909
  • collateral securities book 1864-91
  • papers re Overend Gurney crisis 1866-7
  • papers of London Small Arms Co Ltd 1866-1920: source overview (PDF 29KB)
  • discount office 1869-84
  • general information books 1870-(1915)
  • passbooks 1873-6
  • foreign bonds ledgers 1875-(1915)
  • securities registers and ledgers 1876-(1915)
  • dividend orders register 1879-(1915)
  • probate book 1880-1908
  • bankrupt accounts book 1881-(1915)
  • customer codes book 1881-(1915)
  • cheques issued register 1881-(1915)
  • dormant accounts book 1882-(1915)
  • country banks results books 1881-(1915)
  • papers re underwriting and registrarship 1883-(1915)
  • customer circulars 1885
  • terms with customers books 1887-(1915)
  • advances engagements books 1890-(1915)
  • memorandum of securities, country office 1890-(1915)
  • stock office files 1892-(1915)
  • accounts of ladies and titled persons book 1899
  • country enquiry books 1899-(1915)
  • papers re United Electric Tramways of Montevideo Ltd, tramways company, Montevideo 1905-25: source overview (PDF 28KB)

Staff records

  • clerks' bonds of fidelity 1754, 1789-99
  • Christmas money books 1772-1889, 1910-(1915)
  • salary receipt books 1810-46
  • clerks' salary books 1810-48
  • clerks' registers c.1829-(1915)
  • staff cartoons: c.1831-1940, scrapbooks c.1791-1924
  • list and letters of applications for clerkships 1840s-50s
  • letters from applicants 1843-5
  • lists of clerks and Christmas money 1865-1910
  • admission register 1865-(1915)
  • regulations re admission of clerks c.1868, 1883
  • papers re salary increases and bonuses 1869-(1915)
  • requirements for admission to clerkships c.1875
  • scrapbook re staff 1881-1934
  • staff seniority lists c.1889-(1915)
  • late attendance book 1894-6
  • staff photographs c.1896-1960s
  • instruction cards for walk clerks c.1910s
  • correspondence with and circulars to staff on active service 1915-8, 1942-5
  • staff annual 1930-8
  • staff club papers 1923-68
  • papers re staff at evacuated Central Clearing House 1939-41
  • staff association papers 1940-78
  • staff assurance scheme minute book 1947-55
  • staff magazines 1954-70
  • staff superannuation fund trust deed and rules 1962
  • staff leaflet 1966

Property records

  • bills of charges 1757-9, 1822-4
  • rental receipt 1758-9
  • inventory, Birchin Lane 1788
  • fire insurance policies 1801, 1803-4
  • correspondence re tenants, Change Alley 1803-18
  • title deeds: Change Alley, Birchin Lane and Lombard Street 1807, 1836, 1882, Lampton Hall 1887-1950
  • auction particulars, Lombard Street and Change Alley 1867-77
  • papers re alterations, Lombard Street and Birchin Lane 1872-95
  • list of premises for letting as offices, Birchin Lane and Change Alley 1874
  • photographs: Lombard Street 1893-1969, Lampton House c.1930, 1950s, Osterley Park and grounds c.1939, Moorend Park Hotel c.1940s
  • papers: telephone installation 1898, lift installation 1887-9, mechanisation 1932-1950s
  • plans, drawings and papers, Cornhill 1864, Lombard Street, Birchin Lane and Change Alley 1867-1969, Whitehall branch 1926-31
  • papers re removal to new Lombard Street building 1933
  • agreements re Osterley Park 1939, 1951
  • valuation of partners' plate 1937

Note issue records

  • promissory note 1870
  • guardbook of correspondence and specimens re banknote printing 1880-1930

Marketing records

  • presscuttings: 1772-1962, guardbook 1887-1923, 1948-64
  • scrapbooks, Glyn's Gleanings, of notes, cartoons, etc 1888-1958
  • papers re advertising 1943-59, 1966-8
  • advertisements guardbook 1956-61
  • maps of central London showing the location of branches of the constituent banks of the Three Banks Group 1960
  • papers re booklet The Three Banks Guide to Britain 1961-5

Other records

  • lottery tickets 1767-1860
  • papers of North East Division of London Loyal Volunteers 1798-1802: source overview (PDF 27KB)
  • correspondence re winding up of Esdaile, Grenfell, Thomas & Co 1836-73
  • papers re Gold Standard Defence Association 1895-1901: source overview (PDF 32KB)
  • papers re air raid precautions 1936-45
  • papers re wartime procedures 1938-40
  • papers re development of plasticised papers for cheques 1950s-60s
  • papers re cheque packs 1958-9
  • note re involvement in sterling crisis 1964

Summary of archive holdings elsewhere

  • Northumberland Archives Service: Papers re financial difficulties 1772 (Ref: 2DE/36/2/1-88)
  • Library and Archives Canada: Correspondence of E P Tache, receiver general, to Glyn, Mills & Co 1851-81 (Ref: MG24 D36); correspondence of Sir Alexander Tilloch Galt, minister of finance, with George Carr Glyn 1859-81 (Ref: MG27 1 D8); registers of Glyn, Mills & Co debentures, receiver general's office 1860-62 (Ref: RG19, Finance)
  • The Bank of England Archive: Governor’s files re bank amalgamations, incl Glyn, Mills & Co with Child & Co 1923-4, possible mergers Glyn, Mills & Co with Messrs Drummond 1923 and Glyn, Mills & Co with one or more Manchester banks 1927-35, acquisition of Glyn, Mills & Co by The Royal Bank of Scotland 1938-39 and purchase of Glyn, Mills & Co's Oxford branch by Martins Bank 1942 (Ref: G1/9-11); discount office file re Glyn, Mills & Co 1935-70 (Ref: C48/63)