HSBC Bank, 62–65 Cornmarket

HSBC Bank in 2009

Seven shops in Cornmarket just to the north of St Martin’s Church were demolished along with the main body of the church in 1896.

This building on the corner replaced the four shops 62, 63, 64, and 65 Cornmarket in 1896/7. It was designed by H. T. Hare as a large new shop for the tailor Frank East with a smaller shop and an entrance down to the Sun Wine Vaults on the right. It is owned by Oxford City Council.

By 1914 Hare’s old shop was taken over by the London City and Midland Bank (later renamed the Midland Bank and now HSBC), and in the early 1970s they also took over the former Carfax Assembly Rooms at No. 62 ( (with the large door on the right in the above picture). The extended bank is a Grade II listed building.

The photographs below show the southern part of the new building left when it was Frank East’s draper’s shop and right when the bank had taken it over.

No 65, draper's shop  Old Midland Bank

In the Censuses


No. 62:The stationer Henry Sumersford (21) lives here with his sister Martha (26) as his housekeeper

No. 63: James Wickens, the landlord of the Sun, is obviously away on census night, as the only occupants are Frederick J. Wickens (16), described as the son of the head of the household, and a barmaid and a general servant.

No. 64: The linen-draper Harman J. Howland (31) is living over his shop. He is described as the employer of two men and two women, and these four live on the premises with him. They have one female servant.

No. 65: The trunk-maker Thomas P. Pavier (35) is living here with his wife Eliza (33).


No. 62:The coachman William Sumersford (26) lives here with his sister, Martha Sumersford, as his housekeeper. Both are unmarried.

No. 63: The Sun pub (unnamed, but numbered 63) is occupied by John Slatter (41), a wine merchant’s clerk, and a porter.

No. 64: The linen draper William Oliver (46) is living here with his wife Eliza (42) and children Clara (5) and Horace (4). He is described as the employer of sixteen hands, and half of them (four shopwomen and four draper’s apprentices) live over the shop with their master. The household has three female domestic servants.

No. 65: A mason’s labourer, Edward Simms (33) is living here with his wife Ann (39), who is the housekeeper for the offices below.


No. 62: Now the Burton Ale Stores, the living accommodation is listed as unoccupied.

No. 63: The “Sun Wine Vaults” at No. 63 are occupied by the widow Mrs Eliza Rose (69), who is described as head of the household and presumably owned the business. Living with her are Edward Stokes, described as her servant, who was a “Manager Wine Merchant”, and a female general servant.

No. 64: A draper’s assistant, Thomas Baker (26) is listed as the head of the household over Shepherd’s tailor’s shop. Eight other young draper’s assistants (three male and five female) and one draper’s apprentice live in the household, and their is just one 16-year-old girl serving as a domestic servant. (Arthur Shepherd (47), their employer, is living in Woodstock Road with his wife and four children.)

No. 65: A general labourer, John Archer (53) is living here with his wife Jemimah (46), who is the housekeeper for the offices below.

Occupants of 62–65 Cornmarket listed in directories etc.


No. 65 (left) No. 64 No. 63 No. 62 (right)





Charles Bowen
Linen draper

The Sun (aka the
Sun Stores
the Sun Vaults, and the
Sun Wine & Spirit Stores

Landlords (subject to University wine licence):
1793: Mary Davis
1823: Richard Gurden
1830: James Wickens sen.
1839–1861: James Wickens
1865: Frederick Rose
1867: Executors of the late Frederick Rose
1871: Charlotte Rose
1872: F. Rose
1880: Rose and Stringer
1884: Alfred F. Rose
1887: Alfred F. Rose (proprietor) and G. Lowles (manager)
1890: M. F. E. Bush, mgr



Thomas Eldred

Not listed


Harman John Howland, Draper

William Sumersford
Stationer & paper bag manufacturer



William  Oliver
Linen draper
& mourning


Phillips Bros,
Burton Ale Stores


Frank East
Linen draper, silk mercer, costume, mantle, and bonnet warehouse

A. Shepherd
Tailor & robe maker


Not listed (nor are
59, 60& 61 to north)

The four old shops were demolished in 1896/7 at the time the bulk of St Martin’s Church was removed


Frank East

Sun Wine & Spirit Stores (1899, 1901/2, 1914, 1921)

Sun Vaults public house (Paul Roder & Son) (1911)

1901–1902: J. Holder
1921: Arthur Gerkin


London City &
Midland Bank Ltd
in 1914, 1921

Midland Bank
in 1928

since 1992

Midland Bank Chambers
Gridiron Club (1932–1936)
Ministry of Labour & National Service Employment Exchange (1947–1954)
Part of the Bank from 1956


Stephanus P. Ora
Tobacconist (to 1947)

Oxford & District
Co-operative Society
Ltd, Tobacconist


Carfax Assembly Rooms (1935–6)

Carfax Assembly Rooms
(Oxford & District Co-operative
Society Ltd

Carfax Assembly Rooms and
Carfax Caféteria
(Oxford & District Co-operative Society Ltd)

Orchid Restaurant (1967)

Carfax Assembly Rooms (1968)



Oxford & District Co-operative
Society Carpet Centre


Midland Bank/HSBC

* Proprietors: Jonathan Lowndes (1872): T. F. Plowman (1880); Hugh Hall (1890) Other people in the Jackson’s Oxford Journal premises (or to the south, perhaps adjacent to the old church, were:

  • 1839: Haldon & Lowndes, Publishers
  • 1846: Haldon & Lowndes, Stationers; and Henry Hall, Printer
  • 1867: United Kingdom Electric Telegraph Office; and S. E. Robinson, Auctioneer & estate agent
  • 1872: W. Peppercorn, Solicitor
  • 1880: Offices of the Oxford Corn Exchange Co. Ltd., and of the Oxfordshire Agricultural Society
  • 1890: Arthur Edwin Preston, Chartered Accountant


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