Carlisle is a city in England. National Westminster Bank traces its heritage there back to 1913.

Parr's Bank Ltd

NatWest's Carlisle branch was originally opened as an office of Parr's Bank in 1913. Parr's had been founded in Warrington in 1788, and during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries had developed an extensive branch network, so that by 1913 it had 274 branches in England and Wales.

During the nineteenth century Carlisle had expanded considerably with the growth of new industries in the city, particularly textiles, engineering and food processing. The arrival of the railway in 1836 not only stimulated the local economy but also resulted in the development of Carlisle as a railway centre; at one time seven different railway companies operated services to the city. By 1911 Carlisle's population stood at 46,420.

In December 1911 the directors of Parr’s Bank approved a proposal submitted to them by the bank’s general manager to open a branch in Carlisle. Suitable premises at 4 Devonshire Street were identified in May 1912, and the architects W & S Owens were commissioned to provide plans for adapting the building for banking use. The builders Dorrell & Sons began work on the premises in January 1913, and the bank opened for business there on 10 March 1913, under the management of Mr WB Broughall.

In 1918 Parr’s Bank, which by then had 329 offices, merged with London County & Westminster Bank to form London County Westminster & Parr’s Bank, later (from 1923) known simply as Westminster Bank. The bank’s Carlisle business continued to operate from 4 Devonshire Street until it moved to new premises at 41 Lowther Street on 19 February 1962.

More branches

In the inter-war years, more banks opened offices in Carlisle, including the two that eventually merged with Westminster Bank to form National Westminster Bank.

The first of these was District Bank, whose Carlisle branch opened in 1918, and traded from 69 English Street.

In 1922 National Provincial & Union Bank of England opened a Carlisle office at 92 English Street. These premises had been constructed in 1877, and prior to their occupation by the bank had housed the Bush Hotel and the Maypole Dairy Company.

In 1962 District Bank was acquired by National Provincial, but the two banks continued trading separately, and both retained their branches in Carlisle.

National Westminster Bank

In 1970 Westminster Bank, National Provincial Bank and District Bank merged to form National Westminster Bank. In Carlisle, the merged bank now had three branches, located at 69 and 92 English Street and 41 Lowther Street.

In 1973 the former Westminster and National Provincial branches were merged, trading initially from 41 Lowther Street before relocating in 1975 to 92 English Street. In 1977 the former District Bank branch moved into the vacated premises at 41 Lowther Street, where it remained until 1992, when it, too, merged into 92 English Street.