The‌ ‌History‌ ‌of‌ ‌Holt’s‌ ‌Military Bank‌ ‌

The bank supporting our military for 200 years

Holt’s‌ ‌Military‌ ‌Bank‌ ‌has‌ ‌been‌ ‌serving‌ ‌military‌ ‌customers‌ ‌for‌ more ‌200‌ ‌years,‌ ‌providing‌ ‌a‌ ‌general‌ ‌banking‌ ‌business‌ ‌for‌ ‌service‌ ‌personnel‌, ‌their‌ ‌families and veterans.

‌Quite‌ ‌a‌ ‌lot‌ ‌has‌ ‌happened‌ ‌in‌ ‌that‌ ‌time …‌ ‌read‌ ‌on‌ ‌to‌ ‌find‌ ‌out‌ ‌how‌ ‌this‌ ‌longstanding‌ ‌bank‌ ‌has‌ ‌grown‌ ‌from‌ ‌strength‌ ‌to‌ ‌strength‌ ‌since‌ ‌King‌ ‌George‌ ‌III‌ ‌was‌ ‌on‌ ‌the‌ ‌throne.‌ ‌ ‌

‌Serving‌ ‌Since‌ ‌1809‌ ‌

‌Holt’s‌ ‌was‌ ‌established‌ ‌by‌ ‌William‌ ‌Kirkland‌ ‌in‌ ‌1809‌ ‌and‌ ‌initially‌ ‌operated‌ ‌as‌ ‌an‌ ‌Army‌ ‌Agent.‌ ‌

This‌ ‌involved‌ ‌keeping‌ ‌the‌ ‌accounts‌ ‌of‌ ‌regiments,‌ ‌distributing‌ ‌pay‌ ‌and‌ ‌subsidies,‌ ‌dealing‌ ‌in‌ ‌supplies‌ ‌of‌ ‌clothing‌ ‌and‌ ‌equipment‌ ‌and‌ ‌administering‌ ‌claims‌ ‌for‌ ‌pensions‌ ‌and‌ ‌injury.‌ ‌

William‌ ‌was‌ ‌joined‌ ‌by‌ ‌Nugent‌ ‌Kirkland‌ ‌in‌ ‌1815‌ ‌and‌ ‌the‌ ‌firm‌ ‌moved‌ ‌all‌ ‌over‌ ‌London,‌ ‌including‌ ‌Whitehall‌ ‌and‌ ‌Pall‌ ‌Mall.‌ ‌

By‌ ‌1847,‌ ‌it‌ ‌held‌ ‌17‌ ‌army‌ ‌agencies.‌ ‌ ‌

Links‌ ‌were‌ ‌forged‌ ‌with‌ ‌the‌ ‌Navy‌ ‌in‌ ‌1915‌ ‌through‌ ‌the‌ ‌acquisition‌ ‌of‌ ‌naval‌ ‌agents‌ ‌Woodhead‌ ‌&‌ ‌Co,‌ ‌and‌ ‌the‌ ‌Royal‌ ‌Air‌ ‌Force,‌ ‌through‌ ‌the‌ ‌offer‌ ‌of‌ ‌part‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌newly-formed‌ ‌service’s‌ ‌pay‌ ‌agency‌ ‌to‌ ‌Holt‌ ‌&‌ ‌Co‌ ‌in‌ ‌1918.‌ ‌

During‌ ‌WWII,‌ ‌the‌ ‌banking‌ ‌and‌ ‌pay‌ ‌departments‌ ‌were‌ ‌evacuated‌ ‌to‌ ‌Osterley‌ ‌Park,‌ near Isleworth, then on the outskirts of London.

The pay‌ ‌agency‌ ‌accounts‌ ‌increased‌ ‌from‌ ‌2,600‌ ‌in‌ ‌1930‌ ‌to‌ ‌9,900‌ ‌in‌ ‌1939‌ ‌and‌ ‌42,600‌ ‌by‌ ‌September‌ ‌1945.‌ ‌

After‌ ‌the‌ ‌war‌ ‌the‌ ‌pay‌ ‌and‌ ‌ledger‌ ‌departments‌ ‌were‌ ‌moved‌ ‌again,‌ ‌to‌ ‌new‌ ‌offices‌ ‌at‌ ‌Lampton,‌ ‌near‌ ‌Osterley.‌ ‌

In‌ ‌1970,‌ ‌however,‌ ‌following‌ ‌the‌ ‌introduction‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌military‌ ‌salary,‌ ‌the‌ ‌Army‌ ‌and‌ ‌Royal‌ ‌Air‌ ‌Force‌ ‌pay‌ ‌agencies‌ ‌were‌ ‌not‌ ‌renewed,‌ ‌the‌ ‌pay‌ ‌department‌ ‌was‌ ‌closed‌ ‌and‌ ‌the‌ ‌Lampton‌ ‌site‌ ‌sold.‌ ‌ ‌

Holt’s‌ ‌continued‌ ‌to‌ ‌operate‌ ‌many‌ ‌army-linked‌ ‌accounts‌ ‌and‌ ‌in‌ ‌1976,‌ ‌opened‌ ‌a‌ ‌branch‌ ‌in‌ ‌Farnborough‌ ‌to‌ ‌serve‌ ‌its‌ ‌Army ‌customers‌ ‌in‌ ‌the‌ ‌area.‌ ‌

In‌ ‌1992‌ ‌the‌ ‌London‌ ‌business,‌ ‌then‌ ‌known‌ ‌as‌ ‌Holt's‌ ‌Branch, Whitehall,‌ ‌was‌ ‌merged‌ ‌with‌ ‌that‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌nearby‌ ‌Drummonds‌ ‌branch‌ ‌in Charing‌ ‌Cross.‌ ‌

Ever-Changing‌ ‌Military‌ ‌Life‌ ‌

Holt’s‌ Military ‌Banking‌ ‌is‌ ‌one‌ ‌of‌ ‌the‌ ‌few‌ ‌military‌ ‌agents‌ ‌to‌ ‌have‌ ‌served‌ ‌our‌ ‌Armed‌ ‌Forces‌ ‌since‌ ‌before‌ ‌the‌ ‌Battle‌ ‌of‌ ‌Waterloo,‌ ‌through‌ ‌the‌ ‌Great‌ ‌Wars‌ ‌to‌ ‌the‌ ‌modern-day‌ ‌operations‌ ‌in‌ ‌Helmand‌ ‌and‌ ‌Iraq.‌ ‌

Its‌ ‌modern‌ ‌banking‌ ‌practices‌ ‌have‌ ‌evolved‌ ‌from‌ ‌lessons‌ ‌learnt‌ ‌on‌ ‌the‌ ‌battlefield‌ ‌of‌ ‌those‌ ‌who‌ ‌served‌ ‌and‌ ‌returned.‌ ‌

Holt's Role Today

The NatWest Group, including Holt’s Bank, signed the Armed Forces Covenant in 2015 and were awarded the Ministry of Defence employer recognition scheme gold award in 2016 for the work completed in supporting the wider Armed Forces community.

With its mantra being ‘wherever you serve, we serve’, it is still serving alongside British forces across the military world.

This article is a sponsored post as part of a promotion for Holt's Bank.

Find out more about Holt’s Bank and see if its services are right for you here: