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Archives in London and the M25 area


Identity Statement

Reference code(s): GB 0074 CLC/B/207-6
Held at: London Metropolitan Archives
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Date(s): 1953-1971
Level of description: Collection
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Extent: 21 production units.
Name of creator(s): Eastern Bank Ltd


Administrative/Biographical history:

The Eastern Bank Limited was founded in London as a limited company at the end of 1909 as a new Eastern 'exchange' bank, to help finance trade with the East. As well as the Head Office in London, which exercised close day-to-day control, it had two overseas branches. established in 1910 in Bombay and Calcutta. From the start the Bank had a number of powerful institutional shareholders, including the Eastern trading house, E D Sassoon.

In the mid 1950s the Calcutta branch of the bank made several loans to the Mundhra group of companies, owned by Haridas Mundhra. The group included the Brahmapootra Tea Company (India) Limited; Osler Electric Lamp Manufacturing Company Limited; F&C Osler (India) Limited; Richardson & Cruddas Limited; and the British India Corporation.

Haridas Mundhra borrowed in excess of a quarter of a million pounds from Eastern Bank, and subsequently underwent civil and criminal prosecution in India. The manager of the Calcutta branch resigned, and was prosecuted in India for falsifying stautory banking returns. The total loss to Eastern Bank was around 750, 000.


Scope and content/abstract:

Papers of the Eastern Bank Limited relating to the Mundhra Loan, including correspondence; Board memoranda, news cuttings and correspondence relating to the Mundhra Group; memoranda, progress reports, statistics and legal papers regarding Brahmapootra Tea Company (India) Limited and the Osler Electric Lamp Manufacturing Company Limited; and correspondence with Chartered Bank regarding the Mundhra Group.

Access to the archives is subject to a 45 year rule, with a 70 year rule for records containing personally sensitive information. In addition, all records are held off-site, and require at least 24 hours notice for access.

Access & Use

Language/scripts of material:

System of arrangement:

Records arranged by MS number, assigned during cataloguing at the Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section.

Conditions governing access:

Access by appointment only. Please contact staff.

Conditions governing reproduction:

Copyright to this collection rests with the depositor.

Finding aids:

Please see online catalogues at:

Archival Information

Archival history:

Immediate source of acquisition:

The Eastern Bank archives, part of the archives of Standard Chartered Bank, were deposited in the Manuscripts Section of Guildhall Library at various dates after August 1989, when Standard Chartered discontinued its in-house archive service. GL Ms 39015/1-3, comprising three bundles of correspondence, and Ms 39037, comprising one bundle of circulars of specimen signatures, were presented to the Manuscripts Section of Guildhall Library by Barclays Bank Group Archives in May 2000 and February 2001. The Guildhall Library Manuscripts Section merged with the London Metropolitan Archives in 2009.

Allied Materials

Related material:

For the main records of Eastern Bank see CLC/B/207-5.

Publication note:

Description Notes

Archivist's note:

Rules or conventions:
Compiled in compliance with General International Standard Archival Description, ISAD(G), second edition, 2000; National Council on Archives Rules for the Construction of Personal, Place and Corporate Names, 1997.

Date(s) of descriptions:
January to May 2011.

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