Blue Flower

On 12/10/17 a Birmingham halfpenny token from 1793 was discovered in the channel near the blacksmith area by Barry Howard with his metal detector.

These Conder tokens were privately minted due to British coin shortages in rural areas in the late 18th century. Usually pennies and half pennies, Conder tokens were minted by towns, businesses, and organizations of all types to meet a need for low denomination coinage that was not being provided by government. Thousands of varieties of tokens were minted, many are beautiful and intricate works of art.

This is a copper token and shows a boy with a spanner standing by an auger with the words ‘Birmingham Halfpenny 1793’ on the obverse side, with the Hardy family shield of 5 hedgehogs and the words ‘Industry has it’s sure reward’ on the reverse side.

Although it seems unusual for a Birmingham token to be in Norfolk, these were treated as legal tender and would have been recognised out of their area. People moved around in different areas for trade and work. Around the edge of these tokens were the words 'current everywhere'.

A halfpenny in 1850 when the mill was in use would have been worth 23p in today's money.

Below are images of the actual coin found on site as well as one in better condition for sale on the internet to show the detail more clearly.

Graham Bartlett                               

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