Following the flame: Middlesbrough - 'a telephone and a competent typist'
17 Jun 2012
Posted by: Anna Stone
Subjects: Interesting stories
I have really struggled to find references in the archive to our operations in Middlesbrough. The first agency I can find is that of Henry Thompson who represented Norwich Union in 1836 and was still listed as an agent, based at Marton Road, in 1891.
By this date Scottish Accident also had an agent at Middlesbrough as this letter from one of the company's scrap books testifies.
Just before the First World War Commercial Union were operating from Lloyds Bank Chambers in Albert Road with a resident inspector, A L Crawford, and within a few years Norwich Union had also opened a branch in Middlesbrough.
In 1926 the General Accident branch manager at Newcastle reported that he had "great hopes" for Middlesbrough and that he "shortly" expected to "introduce there a telephone and a competent typist."
Within three years business there was obviously living up to his expectations and the “telephone and typist” became a sub branch which moved to offices at 61 Albert Road under Mr Egdell.
Albert Road seems to have been the street for insurance companies as our records indicate that Scottish Union and National opened a new branch in 1938 at number 169 and Norwich Union were at number 17, shown in the photograph below.
If you can add anything to this very sketchy overview of our presence in Middlesbrough please let me know.