In 1885 J.W. Allinson had become the first Active sales Agent in Great Britain in
his home town of Liverpool. In 1886 he was appointed sales agent for Great Britain,
France, Belgium and Holland. One of his first actions was to open a London Office
in 1886 which was established in one room at 95 The Strand under the name of the
"National Cash Register Till Co"..
The Strand & Charing Cross
The First Headquarters of the NCR Company . 1895
In the summer of 1895 Patterson arrived in England terminating the Contract of J.W.Allinson
and setting up the National Cash Register Company Limited with a working capital
of £5000. Premises were rented at 337 the Strand. This Building had previously been
the offices of the London & General Permanent Building Society. The Strand was the
foremost business thoroughfare in London in the 1890's. Having premises in this street
was considered to give one some repute in the business world. The office was at the
Fleet Street end of The Strand a stones throw away from the church of St Mary le
Grande where Charles Dicken's parents were married in 1809. At one side of the office
was the entrance to Helmet Court, a narrow dingy alleyway which led from The Strand
into a maze of Dickensian type houses and narrow streets.
Patterson brought with him an American, who had previously been in charge of the
Brooklyn Agency, Mr C.E.Hall. He was made the London manager and two years later
European Manager. Mr G.H.Carr succeeded him as London Manager.
More offices were opened around the British Isles: Glasgow, Birmingham, Liverpool
and Manchester. The top salesman at this time was John Wicker who had joined Allinson
Number 337 was a four storey building with a basement which was used for the storage
of machines, the ground floor was taken up with showroom and counting house. On the
first floor was a mailing room and a room for the office staff. The whole of the
second floor was taken up by the mechanics who were eight in number. On the top floor
were the workrooms where machines were repaired or re-polished should the wood cabinets
have been scratched on their journey from America. Here too was a small room used
by the Chief mechanic, Mr. J.H.Best who had the grand title of Mechanical Inspector.
He also lived on the premises acting as caretaker
In 1899 the London County Council notified NCR that they wished to acquire the Strand
premises in connection with their massive clearance scheme for the area.
The NCR Property became part of the new Aldwych. In 1903 the Gaiety Theatre was built
on the site of the NCR offices. This Theatre was closed in 1939 and was demolished
in 1957. English Electric House was built on the site and it later became City Bank
The new building selected for the relocation of the office was at 124 Oxford Street