1879

William F Banham is born in London.


1913

William F Banham meets his future wife, Marie-Ann Chinnery.


1923

He and his wife, Marie-Ann, open a chain of shops and experience a number of burglaries. Insurers inform him that insurance cover can only be granted if he can bolt the shop doors from the inside.

William F. BanhamMarie-Ann Banham

1926

William F Banham invents the first automatic door bolt. Banham Automatic Bolt Company Limited is established. The company moves into offices at Beavor House, St Peter’s Road, London W6.

Banham First Automatic Door Bolt

1930

First retail outlet is opened in Oxford Street, London W1. Banham extend their range of physical protection to include window locks, door hinge bolts, grilles and other physical security.

Old Banham Survey Form

1931

Banham host a series of demonstrations in London of their new Automatic Door Bolt lock including the Press, Police and Insurance companies. One of these involves Police Officers from the Metropolitan Police attempting to break-in using a ‘jemmy’ through a door fitted with a Banham Lock. All attempts fail.

Banham Automatic Door Bolt old flyer advert

1932

William F Banham hosts a ‘live event’, which involves a mime dressed as a burglar and standing ‘stock still’ in the window of his shop and only occasionally winking at the passers-by. The traffic in Oxford Street was brought to a standstill. From this Mr Banham (WFB) develops the first logo “Why Fear Burglars” and the famous “Burglar Bill’ logo is created. The slogan is later changed to “Another Burglar Foiled”. A top of the range Banham Lock costs £1:3s:6d.

Front cover of a vintage Banham brochure

1933

The company moves into new headquarters at Eagle House, 108-111 Jermyn Street, London SW1 with their main production facility at Beverley Works, Birmingham.

Vintage letter

1936

Banham’s (Engineering) Limited is incorporated on 24th August with Factory premises at 115a Myddleton Road, Bowes Park, London N22 in order to manufacture their own supplies.

Vintage Banham brochure

1938

The company moves to 185 Kensington High Street, London W8.


1944

Mr and Mrs Banham survive a direct hit by a German bomb on their premises in Kensington by taking cover in the basement under a table. They are rescued after fourteen hours. They are lucky to survive.


1945

Having recovered from extensive injuries after being shot down over Scotland, Rear Gunner Bill Banham is killed after being hit by an army truck.


1948

The company is registered as Banhams Patent Locks Limited (No:457812) under the Companies Act 1948 on 12th August.

Vintage Banham brochure page

1949

The design of Banham locks and cylinders is patented.

Vintage Banham brochure page

1950

Banhams become an affiliate member of the Master Locksmiths Association.

MLA logo

1951

William F Banham, the founder of Banham dies at the age of 73, leaving control of the company in the capable hands of his wife, Marie-Ann, with her sons Peter, John and Gerry assisting. Turnover for the year is £39,250 with a net profit of £22:3s:6d.


1954

The company opens a showroom at 188 Brompton Road, Knightsbridge, London SW7 with manufacturing taking place at 26 Blacks Road, London W6 and the main office at 185 Kensington High Street, London W8. Turnover increased to £50,098 with net profits of £358:8s:7d.


1960

Sales at the beginning of the decade are £90,447 with a net profit of £5,655:11s:2d.


1961

Following a short stay at 44 Blacks Road, London W6, the company moves all its physical security production into a factory at 52-56 Battersea High Street which was then SW9 and is now London SW11. There, they continue to produce ornately scrolled grilles using blacksmiths working metal in traditional ways on forges.


1962

The company moves its showroom functions into a prestigious location at 233-235 Kensington High Street, London W8. Turnover increased to £106,646 with net profits of £6,041:2s:3d.


1964

Banham introduce their key registration system for all its locks and cylinders. This means that no one other than a Banham company can cut a registered Banham key.


1966

More innovation is put into the Banham locking mechanisms including significant security upgrades to their lock cylinders.


1968

The Alarms division is started and begins installing Banham Burglar Alarms.


1969

The Banham logo and name are trademarked.


1970

At the beginning of the decade turnover has risen to £438,207 with profits of £60,018.


1976

The Access Control division is created and the installation and maintenance of door entry systems begins.


1978

The first accounts computer and software system is installed.


1980

Sales at the beginning of the decade are £3,932,104 with Alarms accounting for £912,807 of turnover.


1981

Banham open their Alarm Receiving Centre at Lillie Road, London SW6.


1982

Banham purchase 10 Pascal Street, a Victorian building in Vauxhall. Banham install their first system to reduce paper handling. All documents are photographed and stored as microfiches.


1987

John Banham dies on 2nd December at the age of 65.


1988

Mrs Marie-Ann Banham passes away on 29th December, at the age of 94. Her last entry in Debrett’s reads: BANHAM, Marie-Ann; m William Banham (d 1951); Career ran a gown shop (1931-1951); md Banhams Patent Locks 1951-; Style- Mrs William Banham c/o Banhams Patent Locks Ltd, 233 Kensington High St, W8 (01 937 4311).


1989

CMS Keyholding receives its Certificate of Incorporation.


1990

Turnover now amounts to £9.5 million with a staff of 205.


1991

Banham upgrade their Microx filing system to an electronic scanning version.


1994

Gerry Banham dies on 10th November at the age of 64, leaving Peter Banham at the helm. Banham consolidate the offices in Fulham, Kensington and the physical production in London SW11 under one roof in these larger premises. At this point the company employs 200 staff and has a turnover of £9 million. Due to efficiency savings from computerisation and the consolidation the number of staff is reduced to 180, but the turnover increases to £11 million. Banham receive NACOSS Quality Assurance certification to BS5750 for their Alarm and ARC divisions. Banham's website address appears for the first time as www.banham.com. Peter Banham makes the decision to expand the company’s geographical reach by opening branches with a high street presence in the South East. The first is opened in Guildford. The Banham Alarm Receiving Centre is moved from Lillie Road to Pascal Street into a purpose built state-of-the-art control room.


1996

CMS Keyholding move onto the web as www.cmskeyholding.com. A side-bar feature is added to all Banham cylinders radically increasing their security.


1997

CMS Keyholding receives Quality Assurance Certification from the British Standards Institute for EN ISO 9000. The policy of expansion continues with the opening of the St Albans branch to enable a more prominent coverage in the North Home Counties.


1998

Peter Banham’s policy of expansion continues with the opening of the Maidenhead branch.


1999

Banham win the first Metropolitan Police Gold Award for Reduction in False Alarms.


2000

Group turnover now exceeds £16.7 million with a staff of 245. North London based Capstan Security becomes part of the Banham Group as Banham win their second Metropolitan Police Gold Award for Reduction in False Alarms.


2001

Banham introduce major improvements to their key registration system, including the use of electronic key cards to identify the legitimate owner. Banham win their third Metropolitan Police Gold Award for Reduction in False Alarms.


2002

Banham’s Intranet and WLAN networks are fully implemented connecting all their offices, branches and personnel together. Banham win another Metropolitan Police Award for Reduction in False Alarms. Banham’s expansion continues with the purchase of Aegis Alarms Systems in Hertfordshire. Banham upgrade their paperless system to the very latest Datastore technology.


2003

Banham become the first alarm-industry company to make use of personal digital assistant (PDA) technology. All service and maintenance engineers are issued with electronic handhelds. Turnover now exceeds £20 million. Banham win another Metropolitan Police Award for Reduction in False Alarms. Banham receive NSI Quality Assurance certification to ISO EN ISO 9000 for their Alarm and ARC divisions. The company once again leads the way by filtering all Personal Attack signals received by its ARC. An average 38% reduction means less Police resources wasted.


2004

Banham win another Metropolitan Police Gold Award for Reduction in False Alarms.


2005

Banham win another Metropolitan Police Award for Reduction in False Alarms. Capstan Security wins a Bronze award at the same ceremony. Continuing innovation leads to the production of the Banham L2000 Rim Deadbolt (Strong Staple).


2006

Banham Patent Locks Limited celebrates eighty years of supplying and fitting high quality security products. Banham win another Metropolitan Police Gold Award for Reduction in False Alarms. Capstan Security improves and wins a Gold award at the same ceremony. Banham open their North London showroom at Golders Green, London to increase their prominence in North London.

Metropolitan Police Alarm Performance Award

2007

Banham purchase Tara Burglar Alarms in Ebury Bridge Road, Chelsea.


2009

Miggy Banham dies aged 95, followed by Peter Banham, aged 85 later that year.


2010

Factory production of physical security is discontinued in London. Banham acquires the assets of Securisys Link Ltd from the Administrator and Complete Security Essex Ltd on 1st October; operations were successfully transferred from Complete’s Billericay Offices to Pascal St. The Banham Charitable Foundation was founded on 23rd July and the first recipient of its largess was the London Ambulance Service.


2011

Banham launch Close Link Security extending our services to bespoke security management consultancy and security solution to high net worth private and corporate clients.


2012

Banham launch their Concierge company offering premium lifestyle management services. Banham proudly sponsors the RNLI annual dinner at the Dorchester Hotel. Security 201 in East Sussex joins the Banham Group.


2013

GSM Security Ltd., specialists in Door Entry and Access Control, become part of the Banham Group.

GSM Security Ltd.

2014

After 32 years of operating from the Pascal Street Headquarters, Banham's confirmation of a move to the newly built Earlsfield complex gains much media attention.

Click on some of the examples below:

SW Londoner Article | Wandsworth Article | Property Week Article

Banham Earlsfield Building

2015

Bridger Alarms become the latest subsidiary under the Banham Group, operating under the new company name of Bridger Security.

Banham move into new Earlsfield HQ.

Bridger Logo

2015

Banham continues to be owned and run by the Banham family, now in its third generation with the founder’s grandson as Chairman and grandchildren as Directors. In this age of large impersonal conglomerates, there are few companies of our size that can be as proud of a family history going back as far as ours.


2016 - Present

On September 28th 2016, Banham celebrated its 90 years of protecting people and property by inviting the Mayor of Wandsworth, clients, and guests to join them for a night of history about the Company.

Read the full Banham Anniversary article to find out more.


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