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Savings Banks Institute - National Branch Quiz

The first National Branch Quiz was held in 1973/74; the 'Branches' consisting of groups of Trustee Savings Banks. A series of group contests were held on a regional basis, with four teams emerging to compete in the semi-finals and final, which were held at the Coventry Esso Hotel on Saturday, April 20th 1974.

The first semi-final was won by the Birmingham Municipal Bank, who beat the Mid-Anglia Branch 59-47.

The second semi-final was won by Edinburgh, who defeated South Eastern 59 to 57. In this contest, the Question Master was the BMB's Godfrey Boden, who undertook his duties (in the official description of the day) 'with .... charm and calmness'.

In the final between Birmingham and Edinburgh, the fortunes of both teams fluctuated throughout and with the scores level the last question went to Birmingham. After a brief team discussion, Birmingham answered correctly and won by the narrowest of margins: 62 to 61.

The winning team are shown in the first photograph (left to right):

                 Harry Madeley; Jean Ager; Clem Batstone; Harry Calver


Birmingham's next appearance at the finals stage of the competition was in 1976/77. The event was held at the Lord Daresbury Hotel, Warrington on Saturday, April 16th 1977, with the BMB team beating Northern Ireland 42-37 in a well-contested sem-final. In the second semi-final, South Wales and West of England defeated Aberdeen 61-35. In the eight-round final, the first six rounds saw two evenly matched teams competing closely to be separated by only one or two points at each stage. But, the final two subjects (history; films and film stars) gained South Wales and West of England 18 points, against Birmingham's 7. This margin of 11 points gave victory to South Wales and West of England by 54 to 44.

Birmingham's team in the 1976/77 final (second photograph; left to right) was:

                 John Walker; Harry Madeley; Jean Ager; Robert Edkins