The Joanna Tansley Collection of Patterns, Proofs and Coining Trials

Date of Auction: 28th September 2005

Sold for £45

Estimate: £60 - £80

Miscellaneous, Kings Norton Metal Co Ltd, Birmingham: Metal samples (5), signed j.h. on both sides, helmeted head of Athena left, kings norton metal co. ld. birm· around, rev. St George on rearing horse left, ‘Chinese’ scroll pattern border, edges plain, all 25mm, in copper, 4.92g/12h; bright brass, 4.95g/12h; dull brass, 5.64g/12h; cupro-nickel, 5.92g/12h; aluminium, 1.80g/12h [5]. Extremely fine, a rare group (£60-80)


Second only illustrated. The metal works at Kings Norton were established by T.R. and T.A. Bayliss in 1889, becoming the Kings Norton Metal Co Ltd in 1890 (see lot 383). The company struck its first coins in 1914 and in 1918 became part of Nobel Industries Ltd, which in turn was one of the founding businesses of Imperial Chemical Industries Ltd, set up in 1926. In 1931 the minting facility was moved to the Kynoch Works, Witton, headquarters of what was then the ICI Metals Division; in 1962 all of ICI’s metal interests were reorganised as an independent company, Imperial Metal Industries Ltd, better known as IMI Ltd and later as IMI plc.Throughout all this time coins were struck with the famous kn mintmark. In 1991 IMI plc bought The Birmingham Mint Ltd and merged the two companies’ minting operations by closing the Witton factory on 9 August 1991 and expanding the facility at Icknield Street, Birmingham, which was now known as IMI Birmingham Mint Ltd. IMI plc sold the mint to a group of institutional investors, led by the venture capital group 3i, for £18 million in May 1998