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100-year-old documents discovered in forgotten safe during bank restoration

By Sue Austin | Welshpool | News | Published:

Documents dating back more than 100 years have been discovered in a forgotten safe during the restoration of an old bank in Welshpool.

Nigel Stephens of SWG Construction looks at the finds

A full refurbishment of the Grade ll Listed former Welshpool Savings Bank in Severn Street is being carried out by local firm SWG Construction to provide a new base in the town for the charity Kaleidoscope.

Workmen on the project discovered an old bank ledger and posters in an old safe - and provision is now being made to display the items in the building for those visiting the charity to look at.

Shaun Humphries, of SWG Construction, said: “This is a mid-19th Century building in Welshpool which will be well known to locals as Welshpool Savings Bank and latterly TSB. It’s Grade ll Listed which means we have had to take great care with the renovation.

“It’s been a complete refurbishment and, during the project, workers discovered an old bank ledger and posters for the bank hidden inside an old safe.

“There are several posters with information about opening times, interest rate charges and so on. The ledger dates back to the early 1900s - there really is some fascinating detail and it’s quite amazing to look at the difference in monetary value between then and now.

“Because the building is listed, extra work has been needed to ensure all conditions set by Cadw, the Welsh Government’s Historic Environment Service, have been met. The refurbishment has included a new flooring, electrics, plumbing, external painting and roofing.

“It’s been carried out sympathetically and will provide an excellent new base for Kaleidoscope - a charity which is providing such an important service for people in Powys.

“As part of the project, a display case has been built in the charity’s reception to display the items found in the safe. A reminder of the importance of the building to the town and a link to the history of the bank which served the community for so many years.”

Kaleidoscope has operated for a number of years from the Armoury Building in Brook Street.

The charity offers treatment and support to individuals dealing with substance misuse and their families and has four bases across Powys.

Sue Austin

By Sue Austin
Chief Reporter

Chief reporter of the Oswestry/Mid Wales office. Keen to hear your news.

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