Ironbridge museum tokens

Started by bruce61813, April 05, 2007, 02:02:29 AM

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bruce61813

Read this, reminded me of some recent tokens, interesting that they are used as currency or were. these were produced for museums in Wales, and were purchased to be used within the museum system to purchase various thing. I wonder how they are distinguished from the"Puffins"as far the laws go.

Bruce

Figleaf

I actually visited the Ironbridge Museums over two decades ago. It's plural, because there are several sites around Coalbrookdale (Shropshire), including the Iron Bridge (picture), but the main site is the Industrial Revolution theme park (Blists Hill), a collection of genuine buildings of the time of the industrial revolution, from a farm and a printshop to a small (operating) steel plant. At Lloyd's bank, clerks with coattails and high top hats will change your modern British money for these tokens (there's also a penny in the series) at a fixed rate. You can spend the money at the theme park shops. The idea is to give visitors a perspective on wages and prices in the 1890's (a century after the industrial revolution). However, the museum's site no longer mentions the tokens.

The design of the reverse is clearly inspired by the Georgian series of non-decimal coins and therefore anachronistic. The obverses show the museum's logo. It is dominated by the Iron Bridge, a source of considerable pride for the last 200+ years. I have a genuine trade token of Coalbrookdale dating from the time of the Industrial Revolution, showing the same bridge, so that there is a fun visual link between the original trade tokens and the museum tokens issued 195 years later.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

bruce61813

I have one or so of the original tokens also, along with others. that is why I have these three, I would like to get the missing 1d token so i have all 4 , just for fun. I have a fair collection of trade token.

Bruce

Figleaf

Sorry Bruce. No duplicates here. Maybe someone else has one...

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

muntenman

I have the 3 pence also as depicted. I have just learned its origin. Thanks, Eric.
GLOBAL MODERATOR under the name of GRIVNAGOZER at www.munthunter.nl

bruce61813

I have just won a set of 1D, half penny and farthing, so I can add the missing penny to the collection. Anyone interested in trading for the other two? I have no idea when they will arrive.

Bruce

muntenman

Hello Bruce, if noone is interested... ??? drop me a line ;D :D greetings, Eric.
GLOBAL MODERATOR under the name of GRIVNAGOZER at www.munthunter.nl

bruce61813

I have the set of four now! the Farthing [1/4 D]. the  1/2 penny, he Penny and the 3 pence tokens. so as far as I know the set is complete.

Bruce

Figleaf

Congratulations on obtaining the whole set. I understand you also have a version of the Coalbrookdale. I think that's what makes the story complete. If you can help muntenman to obtain more items from the series, this site is starting to work as envisaged: making everybody better off through contact, and exchange of information and making a record of the exchange. I hope many more people will eventually read this thread and realie that either, hey modern museum tokens can indeed be interesting or hey, these older trade tokens can be a nice complement to modern items. The trick to make it work is to post and participate frely. Post more, gain more.

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

tonyclayton

It is very interesting to see these tokens.  The horse is the Lloyds TSB logo.
When the museum started up I lived not far away, and we used to visit frequently (I was on their transport committee).  After decimalisation the shop used genuine old pence for a while (I forget the exchange rate) but clearly they lost too many of them so had to mint their own tokens.
It is an excellent heritage site that I cannot recommend too strongly!

Figleaf

#10
Agreed, Tony. Britain has plenty of stately homes and fantastic gardens to visit, but there are very few places devoted to how average people lived. Likewise, there are excellent museums of classical art, art of the Middle Ages and the renaissance, even modern art, bit very few exhibits focused on the 19th century (the only one that comes to my mind is the Musée d'Orsay). Yet, the industrial revolution is one of the economic turning points in human history. If you want to understand the context and impact of the introduction of the steam coin press on coin production, this is the place to start. Having said that, you wonder why they missed the chance to have visitors strike their own tokens, preferably in a steam press! ;D

Peter
An unidentified coin is a piece of metal. An identified coin is a piece of history.

bruce61813

Or they could really make them "work" for it with one of the hand presses.

Bruce

davidrj

Tourist Pennies sold to kids in gift shops at museums etc



The top two are honest straight forward souvenirs and are obviously from the same manufacturer ( does H refer to the Birmingham Mint??)

Both are 30.2mm diameter, the 1987 Ironbridge weighs 8.96g, and Llechwedd 9.2g

The other two are more interesting

The 1901 appears to be an electrotype, seam clearly visible on the edge, 30.5mm , 6.33g

The 1887 is copper washed white metal, 29.1mm, 4.6g and is marked "COPY"

One wonders why? Old pennies are available by the bucketload for buttons, and the kids could take home a bit of real history

malj1

#13
The Ironbridge Gorge Museum tokens are made in several denominations, farthing, Halfpenny, penny, threepence. I have only the first two.

The Welsh mining village also have farthings and halfpennies, also a old style silver 3d and sixpence. ...maybe other denominations?

The others I have not seen and as you say it seems odd to make copies when there are plenty of originals to go around.

I shall check further.
Malcolm
Have a look at  my tokens and my banknotes.

andyg

The Ironbridge and the Llechwedd tokens are both still in use - or at least they were last summer.
There is a set exchange rate - 1 penny = 40p?
always willing to trade modern UK coins for modern coins from elsewhere....