Woburn Abbey



MK17 9WA


tel: +44 (0)1525 290333 + 172







Contact details: Victoria Poulton; Matthew Hirst


Date of visit: 22 February 2016


Nature and extent of collection


Private collection of the Russell family (His Grace,

the Duke of Bedford, and the Trustees of

the Bedford Estates).

The collection includes a large number of

commemortative medals relating to various Dukes of

Beford as well as the wider Russell family and

Woburn Abbey itself. It also contains military medals

and a number of coins and tokens plus commemorative

cups inlaid with coins from hoards discovered in the

environs of Woburn through historic Treasure Trove finds.



All numbers below are estimated


Roman coins: 

28 inlaid in a silver gilt cup

28 inlaid in a silver gilt cup

19 inlaid in a silver gilt porringer

100 inlaid into a silver gilt cup

British coins: 5 known; 80 inlaid in a silver gilt cup

British tokens: A small collection, including some trade

tokens with specific relevance to Woburn or the Russell


European coins: 6 known; a quantity of unidentified coins; silver mounted box inset with a coin

Medals (commemorative or military): More than 50, both military and commemorative

Paranumismatica: Various counters and gaming tokens including a set of playing cards and Woburn-related gambling chips

Other: Orders of the Garter – Lesser George and Great George

Badges of the Royal Order of Victoria and Albert

Badge of Tel El Kebir inlaid in a cigarette box




Specific strengths: Commemorative medals relating to the Russell family and Woburn Abbey itself.


Library: Our library does not contain any numismatic volumes.





Are there permanent numismatic displays? Yes: the cups with inlaid coins are on permanent display; a large selection of medals and coins are also on permanent display.


Is numismatic material incorporated into more general displays? Yes.


Is there a facility for temporary exhibitions? Not at rhe moment.


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



Access to the collection


Is there a study facility? We have a limited study facility, yes.


Is equipment (balances, magnifying glasses, etc.) provided? No, it would be preferable if visiting researchers brought their own.



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? Numismatic collections are included in some tours of the Abbey.


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? No.



Curatorial knowledge


Is there any numismatic expertise in-house? If so, who, and in what areas? N/A


Is there access to external expertise? If so, who and in what areas? N/A


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

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