Our people at work

Ten objects illuminating the working lives of bank staff, from the earliest clerks to our modern diverse workforce.

Explore the objects

41: Spike file, 1781

Used for filing Drummonds Bank promissory notes.

42: Memorial ring, 1838

Worn by James Douglas of Commercial Bank of Scotland in memory of Alexander Macartney.

43: Clerk's armrest, 19th century

Used to prevent muscle strain when writing in large ledgers. 

44: Royal Bank Magazine, 1895

The Royal Bank of Scotland's first magazine for staff.

45: Montage photograph, 1899

Depicting 144 managers of the Royal Bank of Scotland.

46: Field service postcard, 1918

Sent by Samuel McKnight to his former colleagues at the Royal Bank of Scotland. 

47: Typewriter, 1925

The Underwood No.5 was a popular model in many offices, including banks.

48: Exam papers, 1929

Papers for Part 1 of the Institute of Bankers examinations.

49: Marriage ban memo, 1932

Issued by National Bank of Scotland, preventing clerks from marrying until their income was high enough.

50: Staff uniform sari, 2004

The Royal Bank's staff wardrobe included a sari option from 1994 onwards.