Burnley Building Society

The Burnley Building Society, incorporated in Burnley in 1850, was, by 1911, not only "by far the largest in the County of Lancashire... but the sixth in magnitude in the kingdom".[1] Their motto was By Service We Progress.[2]

Burnley Building Society
TypeBuilding Society (Mutual)
Financial services
FateMerger with Provincial Building Society
SuccessorNational & Provincial
HeadquartersBurnley, Lancashire, England
ProductsSavings, Mortgages, Investments,
Loans, Insurance
Total assets> £1,000 million (1982)


The Burnley Building Society was founded as a permanent Building Society named the Burnley Benefit Building Society. The town had previously had "terminating societies" which were wound up once they had reached their goals. The earliest of these being the Hall Union Club prior to 1800 and Burnley Benefit Society in 1815.[3]

In 1968 it merged with the Borough Land and Building Society, another Burnley Society which, in 1911, was described as "by far the largest Building Society registered under the Industrial and Friendly Societies Acts".[1]

In 1952 it had assets exceeding £32 million[4] rising above £195 million by 1969[5] and it had surpassed £1,000 million by 1982.[6]

Burnley Building Society (which also included the Whitehaven and Westmorland Building Societies)[3] and Provincial Building Society merged in 1984 to become National & Provincial Building Society.[7]

Lord Charles Geoffrey Nicholas Kay-Shuttleworth, 5th Baron Shuttleworth KG, KCVO had been appointed as a director of Burnley Building Society in 1979 and subsequently became chairman of the newly formed National & Provincial and later deputy chairman of Abbey National.[8]

The National and Provincial had existed since 1982 following its change of name from the Provincial Building Society after the transfer of engagements of the Burnley Building Society earlier that year.

On 4 August 1996 Abbey National took over the National and Provincial Building Society and shortly afterwards began to make arrangements for the disposal of the records of that Society and its predecessors which were stored at its offices in Parker Lane, Burnley.[1]

Premises and BranchesEdit

Former Burnley Building Society head office in the town centre
Former office at Duke Bar

The former headquarters were located on the corner of Parker Lane and Grimshaw Street, Burnley in a Grade II listed office block, built 1927–1930 to the designs of architects Briggs and Thornley.[9]

The former premises on Colne Road in Duke Bar, Burnley are now used by the St John Ambulance. The name of the building society can still be seen embossed above the windows on Extwistle Street.

An example of a sculpted Burnley Building Society coat of arms is still in-situ above the entrance to a former branch, currently Cafe Nero at 16 Davy Gate in York, Yorkshire.[10] The coat of arms shares several similarities with the former Burnley County Borough coat of arms; namely the red chevron representing the rivers Calder & Brun along with Bees and cotton plants representing the town's cotton industry.[11]

An edition of The Times newspaper from Friday November 7, 1969 shows an advert stating that London offices were located at 129 Kingsway WC2 presently a Boots store[12] and 2 Hanover Street W1.[13]

A branch was located on Bradshaw Gate, Bolton, Lancashire.[14]

Advertising and PromotionEdit

“Build the world you want . . . with The Burnley” was used as a newspaper advert tagline in 1972.[15]

In the late 1970s the Burnley Building Society produced a promotional 7-inch single titled "The Best Things Begin With B" recorded at Good Earth Studios.[16] It was performed by George Chandler and lyrics were written by Salman Rushdie.[17]

Blackpool Transport's illuminated rocket which was launched in 1961[18] was sponsored by the Burnley Building Society around the late 1970s to early 1980s. The tram was emblazoned with an illuminated Burnley Building Society logo on the front and the side[19] and carried a giant rocket that said "Go Up In The World With The Burnley."[18]

Promotional Filmography[20]
Year Title
1972 Burnley Building Society (30 Sec Version)
1975 Burnley Building Society: Your Pound
1976 Burnley Building Society: Your Pound - Revised
1980 Burnley Building Society: Disco
1981 Burnley Building Society: Red Carpet

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ a b c "Burnley Building Society". The National Archives. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
  2. ^ "Burnley Building Society". The Heraldry Society. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  3. ^ a b "ROGER FROST: Burnley from above - St James's Street". www.clitheroeadvertiser.co.uk. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  4. ^ "Sign In to The Times & The Sunday Times". account.thetimes.co.uk. Retrieved 17 December 2020.
  5. ^ "Viewing 1969/11/7 Page 4 - Burnley Building Society". www.thetimes.co.uk. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  6. ^ "Sign In to The Times & The Sunday Times". account.thetimes.co.uk. Retrieved 17 December 2020.
  7. ^ "Past Building Societies". BuildingSociety.com. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
  8. ^ "Lord Shuttleworth – Derian House Childrens Hospice". Retrieved 19 January 2021.
  9. ^ Historic England. "Burnley Building Society Offices, Burnley (1245015)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 1 November 2020.
  10. ^ "Burnley Building Society". The Heraldry Society. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  11. ^ "CIVIC HERALDRY OF ENGLAND AND WALES - NORTH WEST REGION". www.civicheraldry.co.uk. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  12. ^ "London Kingsway". www.boots.com. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  13. ^ "Viewing 1969/11/7 Page 4 - Burnley Building Society". www.thetimes.co.uk. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  14. ^ "17 Bradshawgate - Bolton bygone scenes and now". bolton.webeden.co.uk. Retrieved 16 December 2020.
  15. ^ "Sign In to The Times & The Sunday Times". account.thetimes.co.uk. Retrieved 28 December 2020.
  16. ^ "After the Satanic Verses, the romantic lyrics". 22 January 1999.
  17. ^ Glaister, Dan (22 January 1999). "After the Satanic Verses, the romantic lyrics". The Guardian. Retrieved 15 May 2020.
  18. ^ a b "Illuminated Rocket 732", Fylde Transport Trust.
  19. ^ "Rocket tram to shine again?", LTT (Lancastrian Transport Trust), 22 February 2012.
  20. ^ "Burnley Building Society", BFI.


  •   This article incorporates text published under the British Open Government Licence: Burnley Building Society in the National Archive (1997)