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Black Country Living Museum

Tipton Road


West Midlands



tel: +44 (0)151 478 4393




email: [email protected]



Contact details: Jessica Lambert; Helen Taylor, John Beckerson


Date of visit: 25 August 2015


Nature and extent of collection


200 pieces. The museum collects objects from the 1850s to the end of the 1940s that have a strong connection to the Black Country.

The museum's mission statement is to “engage the hearts and minds through the best use of our collections to inspire the widest possible audience about the story of the Black Country – the world’s first industrial landscape.”


The museum has been collecting since 1975 and the collections include 60 buildings and engineering structures, collections relating to Black Country industries such as chain, tail, trap and lock manufacture, vehicles made and used in the Black Country including canal boats, trolley buses and trams and archives relating to local companies. We try to represent the everyday life of the Black Country working class. We are a living museum and use costumed interpretation and open display.


In our numismatic collection we hold coins (mainly 20th century) and tokens from local businesses some of which do date back to the 18th century.



All numbers below are estimated


British coins: 100

British tokens: 80

Medals (commemorative or military): 120

Paranumismatica: A small collection

Other: A small collection



Specific strengths: Modern British coins and commemorative and military medals.


Library: We have two numismatic volumes in our collection of books, journals and trade catalogues.





Database used: Adlib


Proportion of collection on database: 100%


How much detail in database entries? This varies.


Are images incorporated? Yes, some of our most recently created records include images.


Is the database accessible to the public? Not yet.


Is the database publicly accessible online? Not yet.





Are there permanent numismatic displays? No.


Is numismatic material incorporated into more general displays? Yes.


Is there a facility for temporary exhibitions? Yes.


Have there been numismatic exhibitions in the past? If so, what? No.



Access to the collection


Is there a study facility? Yes, but appointments must be booked in advance.


Is equipment (balances, magnifying glasses, etc.) provided? Yes, staff can prepare equipment if needed.



Public engagement with numismatic collection


Is there a handling collection? No.


Are numismatic collections used in Education sessions? No.


Do numismatic collections feature in gallery talks, lectures? Yes – pre-decimal coinage is explained in some of the shops onsite.


Are there other engagement activities based around numismatic collections? No.



ID and public enquiries


Does the museum offer a service for identifying objects and other public enquiries? Yes.



Curatorial knowledge


Is there any numismatic expertise in-house? If so, who, and in what areas? No.


Is there access to external expertise? If so, who and in what areas? No.


If there is expertise in-house, is there a willingness/capacity to share that with other museums? There is a willingness to share with other museums.