Maberly Phillips.

A history of banks, bankers, & banking in Northumberland, Durham, and North Yorkshire, illustrating the commercial development of the north of England, from 1755 to 1894, with numerous portraits, facsimiles of notes, signatures, documents, &c online

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Online LibraryMaberly PhillipsA history of banks, bankers, & banking in Northumberland, Durham, and North Yorkshire, illustrating the commercial development of the north of England, from 1755 to 1894, with numerous portraits, facsimiles of notes, signatures, documents, &c → online text (page 45 of 57)
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"April ISth, 1806.
At a Meeting of the Creditors of Messrs. Surtees's, Burdon, and Brandling, held this day at Loftus's
Long Room, in Newcastle-upon-Tyne,

Resolved, — That a Committee of the Creditors be appointed to confer with the present Committee,
and to investigate the State of the Affairs of Surtees's, Burdon, and Brandling.

That such Committee do consist of the following Gentlemen, viz., Sir John E. Swinburne, Bart.,
Mr. 0. Blackett, Mr. Pearson, Mr. Pybus, Mr. John Goodchild, jun., Mr. W. Clarke of Wall's End,
Mr. A. Mowbray, Mr. James Porster of Carlisle, and Mr. Wm. Batson ; and that any two of them shall
be a Quorum.

That the Committee be requested to lay a Statement, as soon as conveniently may be, of the
Affairs of the House of Messrs. Surtees's, Burdon, and Brandling, before a General Meeting of the
Creditors, to be called by the Committee by Public Advertisement for that Purpose, and at the same
time to state their Opinion as to the most eligible Plan to be pursued in future for the final Adjustment
of the Concerns of that House.

At a very numerous Meeting of the Creditors of Messrs. Surtees, Burdon, Brandling, and
Embleton, held this day at Geo. Dixon's, King's Arms, in Berwick-upon-Tweed, the Resolutions
entered into at a Meeting of the Creditors of Messrs. Surtees, Burdon, and Brandling, held the 18th
instant, at Newcastle-upon-Tyne, were read ; and it was resolved to concur in the Appointment of the
same Gentlemen as a Committee, to investigate also the Affairs of Surtees, Burdon, Brandling, and
Embleton, and to request them to lay a Statement, as soon as conveniently may be, of the Affairs of the
House of Messrs. Surtees, Burdon, Brandling, and Embleton, before a General Meeting of the Creditors,
to be called by the Committee by Advertisement for that Purpose, and at the same Time to state their
Opinion as to the most eligible Plan to be pursued in future for the final Adjustment of the Concerns
of that House.

That Mr. John Bailey of Chillingham Castle ; Mr. John Carr of Ford ; Mr. Robert Dick of
Coldstream ; Mr. James Bell of Woodside ; be added on the part of this Meeting to the Committee at

That the Thanks of this Meeting be given to the Gentlemen who compose the original Committee
at Berwick. ii2nd April, 1806."

Another meeting of creditors was called for May 15th, in Loftus's Long Room,
Newcastle, by the committee, " when a statement of the affairs of the house will
be laid before them." Signed, "John E. Swinburne, chairman." Evidently it was
impossible for the committee to carry matters through, and eventually, on June
6th, Aubone Surtees, John Surtees, Rowland Burdon, and John Embleton, " by
Indentures of Lease and Release and Assignment, . . . conveyed and assigned
all their joint and separate Estates and Effects unto Joseph Bulmer, William
Clark, and Arthur Mowbray, iip07i Trust, to sell the same and distribute the
proceeds amongst the joint and separate creditors who shall execute the said
Trust Deed, within Six Calendar Months from the Date thereof."


It would appear that this arrangement did not satisfy some creditors, as in the
Newcastle Chronicle of July 26th, 1806, a notice is inserted that —

" Aubone Surtees, John Surtees, Rowland Burdon, John Brandling, and John Embleton, having been
declared Bankrupts, they are required to surrender themselves to the Commissioners on the 7th, 8th,
and 23rd Days of August, at the House of "William Loftus, Turk's Head, Newcastle, to make a full
Discovery and Disclosure of their Estates and Effects." Assignees are appointed, and all persons
indebted to the Bankrupts are to communicate with Mr. Joseph Bainbridge, Solicitor, Newcastle,

On January 15th, 1807, the creditors assemble to consider —

" The disposal of several Sums of Money secured to Mr. Burdon upon the Tolls of Wearmouth-Bridge,
Norton-Road, leading from Bishop-Wearmouth to Norton, and the Road leading from Wearmouth-
Bridge to Gateshead, with the Branch to South Shields " or to their applying to Parliament for Leave
to dispose "of all or part by Tontine or Lottery" or such other way as shall be advised, also the
Interest in a Ropery, called the Patent Ropery, in Bishopwearmouth, carried on under the Firm of
" Webster, Grimshaw, and Company."

Another meeting was held on September 24th, to consider certain proposals
made by Mr. Peter John Bulmer, to them and the creditors of the late Tyne
Iron Company, carried on at Lemington, Northumberland.

It would appear that the Parliamentary powers for a Tontine were procured,
and it was publicly announced as follows : —

'' Alsotole disposed of by Way of TONTINE,
Secured, with legal interest (regularly paid), upon the Tolls arising from that elegant Cast Iron Bridge
across the River Wear, in the Port of Sunderland, called Wearmouth Bridge, which opens out to the
commercial and shipping interest, and the Public in general, a safe and convenient Road along or near
the Sea Shore, from Shields to Hull.

The above Sum of 30,0001. will be divided into five Classes of 6,0001., and each Class to contain
60 Subscribers of 751. each, and to consist of Persons of the following Ages :

The First, of Persons under the Age of 10 Years ; the Second under 20 ; the Third under 30 ;
the Fourth under 40 ; and the Fifth of 40 Years and upwards.

By the above Scheme every Subscriber will be entitled to an immediate interest of 61. 6s. per
Cent, with Benefit of SurvivorshiJ), from the Ist June next, the Day on which the Subscriptions will
close. Persons desirous of subscribing must signify their Intention to do so, and inclose a deposit of
101. upon each Share, in Letters, Post paid, addressed to Mr Thomas Crawhall, Newcastle upon Tyne.

Printed Particulars of the Tontine Scheme, may be had of Wm Atkinson, Esq. No. 58, Chancery
Lane, London ; James Porster, Esq. Banker, Carlisle ; Patrick Dickson, Esq. Berwick ; Robert
Dick, Esq. Coldstream ; R. Strachan, Esq. Writer to the Signet, Edinburgh ; or Joseph Bainbridge,
Solicitor, Newcastle."

Applications to join the tontine not coming forward in a satisfactory manner,
the scheme was eventually abandoned, and a plan started for disposing of the
interest in the property by lottery.

" This could not be done, however, without the aid and authority of Parliament, and so an Act was
obtained in the year 1814. The commissioners named in the Act were Arthur Mowbray, of Durham ;
Joseph Bulmer, of South Shields ; Christopher Blackett, John Chapman, Matthew Atkinson, all of
Newcastle ; James Forster, of Carlisle, banker ; John Molineux, of Newcastle ; Geo. Riddell and
Robert Dick, both of Berwick. The Act stands in the statute-book among the local and personal Acts
as 54 Geo. III., cap. 117.


A copy of a hand bill issued at the time is shown :-



Secured by Act of Parliament on the Roads, Fereies, & Tolls, of the



The GRAND ARCH of which being 236 Feet wide, and 100 Feet high, admits the
largest Vessels to pass under with all Sails set.

I of ^5,000 is ^5,000

1 3,000 3,000

1 2,000 2,000

1 1,000 1,000

6 500 3,000

20 200 4,000

120 100 12,000

6,000 Tickets.



Will be paid in Debentures of £100
each, similar to Exchequer Bills
or East India Bonds, bearing an
Interest of 5 per cent, per Annum ;
and, in addition to the Principal, the
first Half- Year's Dividend of


will be due, and paid the fortunate
Adventurers in London, directly after
the Drawing, which will be before the
Commissioners of the Lottery,

31st October, 1816.

Present Price— Ticket £7 14
Half ..£3 19 6 I Eighth ..£1 1
Quarter 2 6 | Sixteenth 11

The Trustees appointed by) SIR MATTHEW WHITE RIDLEY, Bart., M.P.

the Act 54 Geo. III. are [ CUTHBERT ELLISON, Esq M.P.

TICKETS and SHARES are Selling by



Agent to J. SIVEWRIGHT, the Contractor, London.


Sir Matthew White Ridley and Cuthbert Ellison, Esq., were appointed trustees for the assignees
in the first place, and for the fortunate ticket-holders in the second place ; their trustee-ship to be
terminated only on the terms of the Act having been complied with. The drawing, which took place
previous to the first day of December, 1816, was regulated in like manner as the State Lotteries then
common. Medals were given to every one of the six thousand subscribers, containing a view of the
bridge on one side and a description of it on the other ; and the parties who obtained prizes received
debentures bearing interest at 5 per cent. The debentures were paid off as the Commissioners obtained
funds from the bridge and ferry tolls, and in the manner prescribed by the Act. The last of them was
duly cancelled in the year 1846 or shortly afterwards."

One of the lottery tickets is shown below :—

'' Lti'' 'j~.''/ "*•'/'

/• /HI ll/t

// /<• i//Jjj/i'.u i//i-)/af/i

A Meeting was held September loth, 1811, at the Turk's Head, Newcastle,
for the purpose of considering a dividend. The liabilities of the firm were
very considerable.

The debts proved were : —

£ s. d.

Agsunst the Estate of Aubone Surtees 75,288 5 7

„ „ John Surtees 73,841 13 4

„ „ Rowland Burden 85,368 8 10

,1 n John Brandling . . . . . . . . , . . . 127 3

„ „ John Embleton . . . . ....

£234,625 8
These debts were paid in full. __^.^_^___

Proved against the Exchange Bank —

No. of Creditors 2,425 . . . . £353,479 6 6 Ist Dividend £95,732 15 1

2nd „ 35,344 18 4

3rd „ 14,725 17 1

£145,803 10 6


Proved against the Berwick Bank
No. of Creditors 895

c —

£ 8. d.

. . £91,253

1 5 1st Dividend

5,703 10 9


9,125 6 1

Debts Proved.

3,802 4 2

£18,631 1

)F Ceeditors.

Debts Paid.

£ B. d.

£ s. d.


234,625 8

234,625 8


353,479 6 6

145,803 10 6


91,253 15

18,631 1


£679,357 15 11

£399,059 19 6

Against Private Estates
Exchange Bank
Berwick Bank . .

Important sales by auction were held of the various valuable properties owned
by the several partners. The particulars and conditions of sale of some of these
are to hand.

" Particulars of Mr. John Surtees' interest under the settlement made previous to his marriage with
his present wife, dated 6th July, 1798, which will be sold by Auction by order of the Assignees of
Aubone Surtees, John Surtees, Eowland Burdon, John Brandling, and John Embleton. In one Lot at
the house of Mr. William Loftus, the Turk's Head, in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, on Thursday, the 30th
July, 1807, between 11 and 1, on the same day, subject to conditions of Sale."

It then recites the marriage settlement between John Surtees, Sarah Lewis
(now Mrs. Surtees), Villiers William Villiers of Lansdown Place, Bath, and
Wilham Surtees of Greencroft, the interest being in ^2,154 5s. 5 per cent. Bank
Annuities, and ;^2,333 6s. 8d. 3 per cent, reduced Annuities. This sum was subject
to an annuity of /"/o to be paid to Frances Cotterell of Reading. The document
is too long to reproduce. It is followed by " Observations," and " Conditions of

In the same manner was advertised Mr. Rowland Burdon's interest in the
Property of the late General Richard Matthews, under the settlement made
previous to his marriage with his present wife, dated 19th February, 1794. It
recites —

" The marriage settlement between Eowland Burdon of the first part ; Cotsford Matthews (now
Mrs. Burdon) then an infant of the age of 20 years and upwards, the only daughter of Richard
Matthews, then late a Brigadier- General in the E.I.C., deceased, of the second part ; Sir John Scott,
now the Et. Hon. John, Lord Eldon, . . . Charles Brandling, Esq., . . . Jeffrey Jackson, and
William Cook, Esqrs., ... of the other part ; . . . interested in the sum of £41,682 12s. 9d.
bank 4 per cent, annuities. . . . To be sold by Auction, Thursday, February 8th, 1809."

Also Mr. John Brandling's interest in the estates of his late Father in the Counties of
Northumberland, Durham, and York. It includes property and various interests in collieries, ballast-
shore, &c., &o., at Felling, Heworth, Jarrow, Jesmond, and North and South Gosforth, the manor of
Middleton, Co. York, also Middleton Hall. Also property at Woodhouse Hill, Hunslet, in the parish
of Leeds, and many other places. To be sold 8th February, 1809.


Further, " Mr. Aubone Surtees' Life and Contingent interest in the sum of £3,836 8s. stock in
the 3 per cent. Consols, and £423 8s. lOd. South Sea Annuities, and also in one-tenth part of a
Valuable estate at Fenton. All that the manor or lordship or reputed manor or lordship of Fenton,
and all that town, township, village, or hamlet, of Fenton," &c., &c. A long and interesting account
of the property is given. To be sold February 8th, 1809.

A final dividend of 8d. in the £ was paid in 1832, making in all 8/1 in the £
on the Newcastle debts. Such a realisation was e\adently unexpected ; many
tradespeople after the stoppage anticipating full value for their notes. One
enterprising individual — John Potts Halbert — " in the Woollen-Drapery Business,
and also in the Linen-Drapery, at his shop opposite (late Messrs. Hall and Kent's),
Dean Street," heads his advertisement with the enticing announcement that
Messrs. Surtees, Burdon, and Brandling's Notes will be taken as usual for goods.

The notice (on the following page) of a Sale of Notes by Auction probably
contains more hidden meaning than we can now fathom.

From a number of paid vouchers before me, it appears that in 1790, Messrs.
Surtees, Burdon, & Co. were drawing upon Messrs. Smith, Payne, & Co. In 1800
the drafts are upon Messrs. Barclay, Bevan, & Co. They are at various dates,
but forty days after date appears the most popular. Of the payees in 1802,
the names of Frederick Glenton, John Scott, John Backhouse, Jos. Pollard, and
Nathaniel Clayton appear.

AUBONE SURTEES. — Edward Surtees married at Ovingham Church,
April 9th, 1705, Frances, daughter and co-heir of William Aubone, Merchant and
Alderman of Newcastle (Mayor 1684-5), who, dying in 171 1, left three sons.
The third of these, Aubone, was baptised at 0\ingham, September 4th, 171 1.
He served his time to a boothman or corn-merchant of Newcastle, and married
Elizabeth, daughter of John Stephenson of Newcastle and Knaresdale. Through
the death of both of his brothers, he inherited the patrimonial estates near
Ovingham, and succeeded to the Receiver-Generalship of Land Tax in Durham
and Northumberland. He was a Wine Merchant in the Close, afterwards in Dean
Street — as "Surtees, Johnson, and Dale" — and a Timber-Merchant at Pandon
Gate — as "Surtees and Liddell," "Surtees and Lambert," and " Surtees and Brown."
In 1757, he gained the freedom of the Hostmen's Company. He was Sheriff of
the town 1744-5 (the year of the Young Pretender's Rebellion), Mayor 176 1-2
and 1 770-1. During his first mayoralty, his wife presented him with twin
daughters. A remarkable account of their baptism will be found in the local press
of that day. The party returned to the Mansion-house accompanied by bands of
music, and saluted with peals of bells. Mr. Surtees was elected an Alderman,
April 1 8th, 1 761, in the room of John Stephenson, Esq., his father-in-law. During




On the 20th of May, Infknt,


Surtees & Burden's


Which for the accommodation of purchafers, will be put
Tip in Lots'. The money to arife from the fa^e to be applied,
in difcharging the esipeoces of Mr. Burdon'a Ele'6lion, nqi


11^ ■! 1111

Zckl.^ Tfl£ Sdm of £200, in 5 and £10 NQtes. all figned'hy
the?1ate Aub6>ir.Surtees ; .thefe notes are fUppofed to be of confi.
derable value, as it isbiinagined that they are charged by his will oq
his real eftaie. on this acpount it i? expe^ed there will be.tuany bid-:
ders tbc this lot-
Lot II. The Cwnof£4G0 in one potAnd Notes, the grcateft part
orihenv (igned j^. Bc-.oon, th.-le being the prc^rty of Teveral poor
4i/ireffed iadividtiali who cannot wait longer foriheir money, will be put
Mp cheap, and fold Without Klerve. This lot is well worth the j^ttentioq
of purchafers..

JLotlll. jf 5.000. confiftinff chiefly of £10 Notes, figned R.
BiJUDON, thofe notes are fuppofeflto be very yjtloable hcing'indorfed
by a Bifhop, an Earl> and alt, the EgertOniOoS of any note. ; This lot
will be found of mtrmfic value, an indorfement of this nature bcuig
equal to a bill at fight.

Lot IV. jTlO.OOO in Notes of various defcnptionsi Uje property
of certain dignified Clergymen : This lot, it is fuppofed, will be
bought in, as tlie proprietors are in no wojit qf money far LleElion

The remainder of the Notes, o mounting to /200000, wnt Bq
difpofcd of in fuch lots as Ihall be agreed upon at the tipie of fale.

^^ The fiile to begin at ten o clock, and continue till all be fold.
Further particulars will be known, on application to Abraham Bogg,

gunDKlanO, I3th Af*>', 1807.

•iocsrtT. raixiUf vutiyufi

[ 397 ]

his second term of office as Mayor, the Duke of Cumberland (not the victor of
Culloden) visited the town. After various festi\aties during the day, in the evening
a ball was held at the Mansion-house, when the Duke " not only danced with,
but paid marked attention to Miss Bessie Surtees, the Mayor's eldest daughter,
a most charming girl then nearly seventeen." But it is doubtful whether the
Mayor's civic honours, his wealth, or his fortune, would have brought such lasting
fame to the family, especially in the " North-countrie," as the romance which
followed. For within a year of the festivities referred to, one night in November,
1772, John Scott, a young lawyer, son of a coal-fitter who lived hard by, erected
a ladder to a lattice-window in the banker's house (still standing on the Sandhill,
Newcastle), down which the fair Bessie descended to the arms of her lover. A
post-chaise was in waiting, and the pair were well on to the Borders before the
town was ringing with the news that the banker's lovely daughter had eloped with
Jack Scott. At first the banker was terribly offended, and would not listen to the
letters begging for forgiveness that soon came from the runaways, and even treated
his old friend John Scott's father, with coolness. Mr. Scott chose a wiser course,
and offered to cover every ;^ioo that the banker would put down for his daughter
with another for his son. A reconciliation was soon brought about, the marriage
ceremony being again performed in St. Nicholas' Church. Residence in the old
house on the Sandhill became no longer possible, as every country yokel craned
his neck and opened his mouth in mute astonishment as the window was pointed
out to him from which the fair Bessie had escaped. Alderman Surtees removed
to the quiet of the White Cross, Newgate Street, and afterwards to Ben well.
Here he lived long enough to see the strange sequel of the run-away marriage.
Step by step his son-in-law rose in office till he became Solicitor-General,
Attorney-General, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, and finally the Lord
Chancellor of England, the old banker being spared to greet his daughter as
Lady Eldon. He died September 30th, 1800, "the father of the Corporation,"
and the oldest banker in the North, being then in his ninetieth year.

Those of my readers who wish to learn more particulars of the life of Lord
Eldon and his charming wife, I refer to the " Life of Lord Eldon," by Twiss.*

♦ " Whether this elopement with a banker's daughter set the example I know not, but a few years afterwards
Lord Westmoreland followed in the wake of John Scott. The story runs that he was dining with Mr. Child, the
well-known London banker, and after dinner asked what course he would pursue, if he loved a girl and her father
would not consent to his marrying her. "Why! run away with her, to be sure," was the banker's reply. A few
nights afterwards Lord Westmoreland eloped with Miss Sarah Child. As soon as her flight was discovered,
Mr. Child gave chase. The track of the runaways was followed, and when in Cumberland, Lord Westmoreland
was so nearly overhauled by Mr. Child, that he stood up in his chaise, and shot dead one of the leading horses
of the banker's team, which enabled his Lordship to gain the border — and his bride 1 In this case the forgiveness
of the parent was not so easily obtained. The banker would never forgive either his daughter or her husband.
Mr. Child died soon afterwards, and left the whole of his immense fortune to the first daughter of the union-
Lady Sarah Sophia Fane, who married George Villiers, Earl of Jersey."


AUBONE SURTEES (IL), third son of Aubone Surtees (I.) Like his father
he entered early into municipal life. He was appointed Sheriff of Newcastle in
1785, having two years previously succeeded Mr. Joseph Saint in the treasurership
of Newcastle Infirmary. At the memorable meeting of the Council, May 13th,
1795 (to which I have referred in my account of James Wilkinson) he was elected
an Alderman, and for refusing to serve he was fined 200 marks (;^i33 6s. 8d.). The
same fate was also awarded to his brother John (another partner in the bank), and
upon the fines being enforced, all the members of the Surtees family left the
Corporation never to return. It is said that the failure of the bank in 1803 was
owing to rash speculations by the younger members of the firm. After the •
suspension, Aubone Surtees took refuge from arrest in the old mansion of John
Widdrington at Hauxley, and thence emerged only on Sundays. Until recently
there existed in the barred outer door a grated wicket, which was used to
reconnoitre strangers before admission.

Mr. Surtees married December, 1781, Mary, third daughter of Roger Altham
of Doctors' Commons and Islington. She died at Hauxley, July 23rd, 1810, and
was buried at Warkworth. The ex-banker died at Honfleur, in 1827, aged 75.
His son, Aubone Altham Surtees, died in Lovaine Row, Newcastle, June 30th,

JOHN SURTEES, sixth son of Aubone Surtees (I.), born 1757, married
Sarah, daughter of the Very Reverend John Lewes, M.A., Dean of Ossory, and
sister of Cassandra Charlotte, wife of his brother William Surtees. After the
failure, Mr. John Surtees retired to the Continent, and died at Chateau-le-Colinais,
near Dinan, Brittany, at the advanced age of 92.

The family of Surtees of Newcastle, merchants and bankers, claimed common
ancestry with the Durham family of the same name, of which the historian of the
County was a distinguished member. Memoranda for a pedigree and account of
the family, by Thomas Bell, the well-known antiquary, with many important
additions, are now in the possession of Mr. Ralph Nelson, of Bishop Auckland.

The fallen bankers never regained their old standing, but the position and power
of Lord Eldon proved the stepping-stone to good appointments and advantageous
marriages for many members of the family. We can naturally conceive that their
relationship to Lord and Lady Eldon was freely quoted by the Surtees family. I
give an amusing story illustrating it.

" By the influence of Lord Eldon, William Villiers Surtees was appointed one of the Commissioners in
Bankruptcy. He was so fond of quoting 'My Uncle, Lord Eldon,' 'My Aunt, Lady Eldon,' that
amongst ' men about town ' he went by the cognomen of ' My Uncle.' On a certain occasion, a Mr.
Isaacs was under examination in the Bankruptcy Court ; his answers to various questions were so

L399 J

distasteful to the presiding Commissioners, of whom ' My Uncle ' was one, that they committed the
unfortunate bankrupt to Newgate for contempt of Court. Isaacs wai-mly remonstrated against such
summary proceedings. ' Sir,' said • My Uncle ' (putting on his spectacles with all the dignity of an
old woman going to cut her corns), ' if you are not satisfied, you can appeal to my Uncle.' ' Sir,'
replied the bankrupt (who naturally concluded ' My Uncle ' must mean the pawnbroker), ' I have
appealed to my Uncle often enough before I made my appearance here, and now you have just taken
my watch from me, and I have not the value of a duplicate left. Sir, you may believe me — I have
spouted everything.' The promptness and unaffectedness of the bankrupt overcame the gravity of the
Commissioners ; loud laughter followed, much to the confusion of * My Uncle,' while a • poet ' kept

Online LibraryMaberly PhillipsA history of banks, bankers, & banking in Northumberland, Durham, and North Yorkshire, illustrating the commercial development of the north of England, from 1755 to 1894, with numerous portraits, facsimiles of notes, signatures, documents, &c → online text (page 45 of 57)