This private bank was established at 10 Lombard Street, City of London, as Marlar, Lascelles, Pell & Down in 1773. It became London agent to a number of banks, including the Royal Bank of Scotland. In December 1825, by which time it was known as Pole, Thornton, Free, Down & Scott, it failed. One of its partners, Henry Sykes Thornton, subsequently joined Williams, Deacon, Labouchere, Thornton & Co, which was reformed after failing during the same crisis.
Detailed list of name changes
- Marlar, Lascelles, Pell & Down from 1773
- Down & Pell in 1782
- Down, Thornton & Free in 1785
- Down, Thornton, Free & Cornwall in 1794
- Down, Thornton, Free & Down by 1808
- Pole, Thornton, Free, Down & Scott by 1815
- 'Henry Sykes Thornton', Three Banks Review, March 1966, vol.69, p.29-37
- 'Letters from a young lady' [Marianne Thornton], Three Banks Review, June 1950, vol.6, p.29-46
- FG Hilton Price, A Handbook of London Bankers (London: Chatto & Windus, 1876)
Summary of our archive holdings
Our archival records of Pole, Thornton, Free, Down & Scott have the reference code PT.
For help understanding words used here, check our glossary of banking record types (PDF 68 KB).
- personal papers of Henry Thornton and his executors, incl papers re sugar refinery in Hull 1770-1875
- agreement and papers re partnership 1797-1821
- country ledger abstracts 1805-12
- papers re customer debt 1813-5
- customer account balance sheets 1814-7
- profit and loss account c.1815
Summary of archive holdings elsewhere
- Cambridge University Library: Correspondence of Mr and Mrs Henry Thornton, incl. correspondence with Sykes family 1777-1815 (Ref: Add 7674/1/L); Standish Meacham junior, ‘Henry Thornton of Clapham 1760-1815’, typescript dissertation, Cambridge Massachusetts, 1960 (Ref: Add 7674/2/C)
- Lambeth Archives: Papers re winding up of the bank, incl draft deeds re property in Bartholomew Lane, London 1826-7 (Ref: IV/104/8/1-22)
- Wigan Archives: Diary of Henry Thornton 1777-1815, with edition of diary by Edward Hall (Ref: EHC18/M786, EHC7/M775, EHC7/M1248)