Lombard Street – Quaker Connections
At the corner of Lombard Street with Gracechurch Street was the largest Quaker Meeting House in London. It existed from the early 1700s to the end of the 19th Century. Quakers are sometimes referred to as ‘Members of the Society of Friends’ or simply as ‘Friends’. On the 1860 map look for ‘Friends Meeting Ho’. On the 1750 map look for ‘Qu M’.
Quaker families were owners of many of the regional banks which merged eventually to form Lloyds Bank and Barclays Bank. Quakers ran over seventy banks at the height of financial expansion in industrial Britain, based on Quaker success in manufacturing, food commodity trading and transport innovation.
Lloyd’s Bank had its main Headquarters in Lombard Street, although it had long standing Quaker connections originally in Birmingham. http://www.lloydsbankinggroup.com/Our-Group/our-heritage/2015-our-milestone-year/250-years-of-lloyds-bank/life-at-lloyds-bank/quaker-connections/
Lombard Street had many Quaker businesses until the mid 19th century. For instance John Freame and Thomas Gould established themselves as goldsmith bankers in 1690. They held the central funds of the Quakers and helped to finance trustworthy Quaker traders in America, including the Pennsylvania Land Company, and in the Caribbean. Barclays traces its ancestry back to these two goldsmith bankers, as can be seen on their official website. https://www.archive.barclays.com/items/show/5419
Another Quaker business which started in this area of Candlewick was the firm which became Allen & Hanburys, founded by Quaker Silvanus Bevan in Old Plough Court, Lombard Street in 1715. Allen & Hanburys became part of Glaxo in 1958, now Glaxo Smith Kline (GSK : London). GSK traces its origin to Bevan’s Pharmacy, as can be seen from their official website. http://www.gsk.com/en-gb/about-us/our-history/