Bannisters History


Bannisters 1950Bannisters has had a long association with Felixstowe, dating back to 1926, originally as the town's oldest established independent estate agents and auctioneers, and since March 2015, has re-structured as Independent Chartered Surveyors undertaking RICS Homebuyer surveys and valuations in Felixstowe, Ipswich, Woodbridge, Kesgrave, Martlesham, and surrounding towns and villages in the Suffolk Coastal area.

It all started back in 1926 when Herbert  Bannister (grandfather) decided to settle in Felixstowe, after living and working as an actor and entertainer based in London, when he went into the estate agency business with a Mr Meehan and a Mr Bloomfield (another long established local name).


Bannisters 1920In 1932, he decided to go solo, and Bannisters' first office was located on the edge of the town station yard where the Co-Op supermarket now stands. When the Second World War broke out ,  he remained behind, running the Home Guard in Kirton and Falkenham, and became involved with the MOD, managing and then selling requisitioned property after the war, eventually moving to an office where the town centre Post Office now stands (pictured at the start of this section).

He retired in the late 1950’s when Bill Bannister (father) came to the business, newly qualified as one of the first of the modern day chartered surveyors after completing his national service in Martlesham Heath. The office moved for a short period over the road to where Galloway Travel currently have their office, before acquiring bank premises on the corner of St Andrews Road where they have remained since

During the 60’s 70’s and 80’s the town of Felixstowe expanded rapidly, first as a popular tourist resort, and more significantly with the development of the Port of Felixstowe and also with BT re-locating their main research office in Martlesham in the1970’s.  With the need for new housing in the town, Bannisters' estate agency business continued to grow.

Bannisters 1970The business acquired an auction house also in St Andrews Road, and then became a partnership, dealing with all aspects of residential and commercial sales and lettings, building surveys, bank and building society valuations, & also becoming local agents for the Ipswich Building Society. A decision was made to close the auction house in 2005 with increased competition from the on line services such as e-bay

Over the years Bannisters has been involved in the sale of many local landmarks including Felixstowe Pier, and the former MOD Barracks at Brackenbury on the Old felixstowe cliff top.

Just prior to Bills retirement in the late 1990’s, the business was joined by third generation, surveyor Richard Bannister (son) who qualified as a Chartered Surveyor in 1996, having previous worked as an insurance loss adjuster specialising in Subsidence Claims, and at the Valuation Office Agency dealing with Council Tax and Business Rates appeals.

Bannisters 2012In march 2015, a decision was made, to transfer the whole of the agency business to Nicholas Estates who have offices in Ipswich, to enable Richard Bannister to focus on the growing area of Residential survey and valuation work in East Suffolk.

If you need independent survey or valuation advice on residential and commercial property or development land in East Suffolk, contact Richard Bannister BSc MRICS:

                                                                            Telephone: 01394 276828                  Mobile:  07931 313991               email: