Next Memory


by Norman Worwood


Normally, recruitment of staff was carried out by advertising. In any case, everyone in Birmingham knew of the existence of the Bank, as its logo, a heraldic-style key, was displayed prominently on each of the two sliding doors of the tramcars that traversed all the main roads of the city and in addition nearly every suburb boasted one branch, of which the windows bore the engraved key emblem. Wartime provided problems, however, as the total staff was depleted due to the departure of the young men into the Armed Forces. One manager, Harold Turner, was instructed to find staff from anywhere he could and it was Beryl Jenns (formerly Hirons) herself who told me how and why she began her lifelong career with the BMB.

She and her friend had just celebrated the end of their schooldays and were walking joyfully to their respective homes. As was customary, they would be looking for work without delay, but for now they were just glad to have finished with school. It was with some surprise that during their walk they were accosted by a gentleman in a suit, who asked whether either of them would like a job with the Bank. The gentleman was Harold Turner and the girl who expressed interest was Beryl, who took him home to meet her mother, who in turn was persuaded that Beryl would he an ideal recruit. Beryl duly joined the staff and was to become a stalwart of the Banking Hall in the Broad Street Head Office and a good friend to many later members of staff there, including me in 1948 right until after her own retirement and recent sad death.


April 2008