Standard Bank's Grahamstown branch was an award winning building when it was built in 1933. As you can see from the main photo it is still impressive today. The 'then' photograph and 1934 description have been taken from L Cumming George's class Architecture in South Africa Vol II. The now photographs were taken during a Heritage Portal visit to Grahamstown in 2013.
Standard Bank Grahamstown 1934
"A handsome edition to the civic architecture of Grahamstown is the new premises of the Grahamstown Branch of the Standard Bank of South Africa Limited, situated in Church Square, adjoining the Town Hall and Municipal Offices.
The base of the building, the steps and the surrounds to the entrance doors are constructed in Roman stone, while the remainder of the facade is finished in a rough textured plaster. The windows and intermediate panels are in bronze, the effect of which is greatly enhanced by the polished plate-glass glazing,
The lettering on the facade is in solid bronze to match the windows and panels. A note of dignified restraint in the handling of the main elevation is evident, and an effect of calm dignity has been achieved, expressive of strength and security.
The interior is designed on simple but dignified lines with premier regard to the comfort of both staff and public. The whole of the interior woodwork and furniture is teak.
These premises have been selected as the best example of architecture erected in the Cape Province during 1933, and for this work the architects, Messrs. F. Owen Eaton and A. A. Tait, have been awarded the C.P.I. Bronze medal for 1933.