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Report - The Birmingham Mint, 2008


Super Moderator
Staff member
We've spent a bit of time in the river this summer, and have discovered a an area which is good for finding coins and jewellery. Among the hundreds of one p's, shopping trolley tokens and euros were a handful of pre-decimal coins. I used to collect coins when I was a lad so I was quite pleased to find them and had a bit of a look under a glass when I got them home. Below the date on a certain battered penny I noticed a tiny letter "H" which I had never seen before. A quick google showed that that letter H meant I had once stood in the very building that coin had been struck in... The Birmingham Mint.


of Icknield Street, Birmingham, 18

Telephone: Central 2532 (3 lines). Telegraphic Address: "Mint, Birmingham". (1937)

The Birmingham Mint, a coining mint, originally known as Heaton's Mint or Ralph Heaton and Sons, in Birmingham, started producing tokens and coins in 1850, as a private enterprise, separate from, but in cooperation with, the Royal Mint.

Its factory was situated in Icknield Street (grid reference SP057877), on the edge of the Jewellery Quarter. It was created by Ralph Heaton II, using sec.. but ond-hand coin presses bought from the estate ofMatthew Robinson Boulton.
We had discussed the propect of having a pop at the mint in the car one day, but assumed due to the very nature of a building that makes money it would be a none starter. I can't actually remember where we had been that night, but Raddog, OT and I ended up pulling over and having a 'quick check' around the perimeter. Imagine my surprise when I leaned on the door handle mid stride and almost hit the deck as the door swung round... the flippin' door was open!

We hastily returned in daylight for a full explore. The place was actually amazing. Other than the machinery which had been auctioned off most of the stuff you would expect to find in a coin and medal mint was in there. The building was wonderfully dated with a groovy 70's canteen and retro offices. The toolmakers benches were still packed full of tools, and on one the fella's glasses were still carefully placed on the bench top.

Anyone exploring a mint would hope to find a coin... but they were literally everywhere in there. On the floor, in boxes and bags. It was all a little surreal.

As with pretty much every place I explored in 06 07 08 I look back at my poorly composed photos and see so much that I literally walked straight past. I've no doubt there was a whole host of epic we missed here.

As with all these old explores I like to stick them back up to show those new to the game what they missed :)



I did wonder where these had gone... one would assume if it was an official removal they would have taken the original box too!



Blank Euros






Lead elves had been











Medal ribbons





Oxygen Thief

Staff member
Raddog, OT and I ended up pulling over and having a 'quick check' around the perimeter. Imagine my surprise when I leaned on the door handle mid stride and almost hit the deck as the door swung round... the flippin' door was open!
That was me wasn't it? Edgy that was, like the guy just popped out for a pizza. I never got back in there in the daylight though.


28DL Regular User
Regular User
Lovely stuff there i must say my pulse went up somewhat when i saw all that gorgeous paperwork.


Got Epic?
Staff member
Some of it was converted.

Are you sure this was 2008 thought it was more like 2006? If it was 2008 im annoyed i didnt go!


28DL Full Member
28DL Full Member
Such a shame I got into this malarkey when all the good stuffs been taken lol and your just rubbing it by posting for all the new comers and what we've "missed" lol git!!! Nice photos bro


Super Moderator
Staff member
The conversion was actually a cluster-fuck. They knocked down more of it than they should have done, left the chimney standing in a field of rubble for years and it is still not all let / sold even now!

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