Composition payments to bankers

Quarterly Bulletin 1970 Q1
Published on 01 March 1970

On 1st January 1970, when the National Westminster Bank Act 1969 took effect, there came to an end a series of annual payments made to bankers under the Bank Charter Act 1844 as compensation for relinquishing their right of note issue. Such payments were known at the time as 'composition'.

Before 1844 the Bank had already made arrangements with some bankers to relinquish their note issues, and to some of these composition was already payable. Section 23 of the Bank Charter Act provided that it was payable henceforth to the forty-three bankers listed in Schedule C of the Act who had come to such an arrangement. The Act fixed the rate and method by which composition payments should be calculated. Under the 1844 Act, composition payments were to cease in 1856, but the Bankers' Compositions Act of that year effectively extended such payments indefinitely.

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