NatWest Bank, Corwen
NatWest Bank, Market Square
Looking at this building you may think it’s centuries old, which is what the designer intended in the 1920s. The architect responsible was probably FCR Palmer, the National Provincial Bank of England’s architect. He produced designs for grand city buildings but the Corwen branch is a pastiche of the timber-framed buildings which had survived since medieval or Tudor times in many Welsh country towns.
The National Provincial Bank opened its Corwen branch in April 1913, after managers at its Bala and Machynlleth branches told head office that many of their customers would be better served by a branch in Corwen. TD Morgans was the first manager of the bank on Market Square. Soon the First World War put pressures on staffing. One of the bank's employees died on active service.
After the war, trade flourished and the Corwen branch needed larger premises. In 1924 the bank bought part of the adjacent Harp Inn site, and the rebuilt and enlarged building was finished in 1927. The National Provincial Bank merged with Westminster Bank in 1970 to form National Westminster Bank, with 3,600 branches.
Cadw, the historic monuments authority, describes the bank’s Corwen building as an “excellent exercise in the vernacular revival styles developed in the inter-war period ... which were a particular hallmark of the National Provincial Bank in North Wales”.
Postcode: LL21 0DE