10 April 2018

218 Upper Street – what's next for bank building?

I just noticed this weekend that the NatWest Bank have moved out of 218 Upper Street and the site is empty.
There's been a bank on this site for over 140 years – in 1874 The National Provincial Bank of England was there and continued to be until at least the 1940s*.
This, of course, isn't the original Victorian building from 1874. I am not actually sure when it was built, I am guessing late 1950/60s, but I have always admired its simple, classic yet imposing façade and, especially, the lovely large circular door handles on the heavy warm-coloured wood. I have a  blank as to who occupied the building when this frontage was installed. Perhaps, judging by the images on the door handle, a Greek bank was here at that time?

Greek references on the [bronze?] panels within the door handles on the right hand pair of doors (top) and left (underneath) – men/gods riding porpoises/dolphins, a swan and a dove or chicken.
At the very top there are three while roundels. At street level as sign shows the bulding is now 
There are also three circular reliefs at the top of the building depicting wheat and what I think might be a Star of David.
At the moment the property is being managed by Lowe Guardians, a charitable trust that, I assume, is care-taking the site until a new business moves in.
I really hope whoever moves in has the nouse to keep all its features intact

*This all needs a bit more research, bit I thought I'd share in case anyone out there has any relevant info.

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