Museum Street




tel: +44 (0)1925 442399







Contact details: Craig Sherwood


Date of visit: 16 July 2013


Nature and extent of collection


6390 pieces. Warrington Museum & Art Gallery’s main focus of collecting is the geographical region defined by the Local Government Act of 1974 which prioritises objects from, or associated with, Warrington and it’s districts. We also have a wide ranging historical collection that covers Natural History; Archaeology; Ethnology; Social and Industrial History; Photography; Fine and Decorative Arts and Numismatics.



All numbers below are estimated


Roman coins: 1,150

British coins: 1,090

British tokens: 1,070

European coins: 1,180

Asian coins: 210

Middle Eastern coins: 20

African coins: 40

American coins: 170

Oceania: 20

Modern and paper money: 60

Medals: 1,070

Paranumismatica: 100

Other: 410

Specific strengths: Roman, British and foreign coins; British Trade Tokens (especially 17th century Lancashire trade tokens); Medals.


Library: General reference library with an emphasis on local history for staff use and public reference library downstairs.





Database used: MODES for Windows


How much detail in database entries? As data is mainly acquired from accession registers we tend to have less detail for earlier acquisitions.


Are images incorporated? Images are included where possible although there has been no systematic digitisation of the numismatic collection. Currently only a small proportion of the records include images.


Is the database accessible to the public? No.


Is the database publicly accessible online? What is the URL if so? No.





Are there permanent numismatic displays? No.


Is numismatic material incorporated into more general displays? Yes, primarily in our local history and world stories (ethnology) galleries.


Is there a facility for temporary exhibitions? Yes.


Have there been numismatic exhibitions in the past? If so, what? There have been no dedicated numismatics exhibitions, but numismatics have been used in past exhibitions.



Access to the collection


Is there a study facility? There is no dedicated study facility although we currently maintain a desk in the collections office for visiting researchers. Provision can be made for researcher use, which must be booked in advance.


Is equipment (balances, magnifying glasses, etc.) provided? Basic equipment such as balances and magnifying glasses etc are available on request.



Public engagement with numismatic collection


Is there a handling collection? There is no dedicated numismatic handling collection, but numismatic material is present in the education collection.


Are numismatic collections used in Education sessions? Yes, but only as part of a wider topic e.g. Roman coins are used in Roman sessions, Victorian coins are used in sessions on Toys or Victorians (e.g. to explain Penny Farthing bicycle).


Do numismatic collections feature in gallery talks, lectures? We have not held any dedicated numismatic talks or lectures, although coins from the nearby Roman site at Wilderspool and the Thomas Wright medal from the Crimean War are both featured in more general tours of the galleries.


Are there other engagement activities based around numismatic collections? Not recently, although there may have been in the past.



ID and public enquiries


Does the museum offer a service for identifying objects and other public enquiries? Yes. We have a drop in Object Enquiry Service on a Wednesday afternoon 2-4 pm and visitors are also welcome to bring in objects outside of those hours.



Curatorial knowledge


Is there any numismatic expertise in-house? If so, who, and in what areas? There is very little numismatic expertise in-house. The Assistant Collections Access Officer has some numismatic knowledge. The Documentation Access Officer has some experience documenting numismatics, having spent some time documenting a collection in Leicester. The Education Officer and the Visitor Services Manager have a background in Archaeology which can assist with archaeological numismatics.


Is there access to external expertise? If so, who and in what areas? More complex numismatics enquiries are currently forwarded to the numismatics department at Manchester Museum.


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

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