Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc | RBS Heritage Hub

RBS heritage hub


Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc

Brief history

This company, originally called National & Commercial Banking Group, was incorporated on 25 March 1968 as a step towards the merger of The Royal Bank of Scotland and National Commercial Bank of Scotland, enacted in 1969.

With effect from 1 April 1969 the two banks merged to form The Royal Bank of Scotland, a subsidiary of National & Commercial Banking Group. The following year, the two banks’ subsidiaries outside Scotland – Williams Deacon’s Bank and Glyn, Mills & Co (subsidiaries of the Royal Bank) and The National Bank (subsidiary of National Commercial) – merged to create Williams & Glyn’s Bank.

Initially National & Commercial Banking Group was solely a holding company for The Royal Bank of Scotland and Williams & Glyn’s Bank, with no executive powers of its own. In 1976, however, the board concluded that a co-ordinating overview between the two banks would bring strategic benefits. They therefore created a new role: managing director of National & Commercial Banking Group. Its first incumbent was John Burke, who was already managing director of The Royal Bank of Scotland.

In 1979 National & Commercial Banking Group’s name was changed to The Royal Bank of Scotland Group.

In 1984 the Group set up a pioneering motor insurance company, The Royal Bank of Scotland Group Insurance Co, later renamed Direct Line.

In 1985 Williams & Glyn’s Bank merged with The Royal Bank of Scotland.

In 1988 the Group acquired Citizens Financial Group of Providence, Rhode Island, USA, and in 1992 it acquired Adam & Company, private bankers of Edinburgh.

In 2000 The Royal Bank of Scotland Group acquired National Westminster Bank, along with its subsidiaries Ulster Bank, Isle of Man Bank, Lombard North Central and Coutts & Co.

In 2007, in a consortium with Banco Santander and Fortis, it acquired the Dutch banking group ABN AMRO. 

 

Published histories

  • The Royal Bank of Scotland: a History (Edinburgh: privately published by The Royal Bank of Scotland, 1998)
  • M Pohl and S Freitag, Handbook on the history of European banks (Aldershot: Edward Elgar, 1994)

 

Summary of our archive holdings

Our archival records of The Royal Bank of Scotland Group have the reference codes RB and NG.

For help understanding words used here, check our glossary of banking record types (PDF 24KB).

  • directors’ meeting minute books 1968-(1985)
  • balance sheets and reports and accounts 1968-(1985)
  • minutes of the Scottish merger liaison committee 1968-9
  • minutes and papers of the pre-formation liaison committee 1968-9
  • minutes of the English merger committee 1969-70
  • minutes of working parties 1969-70
  • papers re computerisation, 1969-74
Set Tab for lightbox