With the demolition of the Metal Box buildings in Rock Valley, another era in the industrial history of Mansfield has changed. The buildings dated back over 100 years and are recalled by local people as Barringers, or Metal box, due to their respective owners – Barringer, Wallis Manners Ltd., and the Metal Box Company. In recent years they became Crown Speciality Packaging, and this has now moved to Forest Town.
While there has been sadness at this company moving out of Mansfield, its history in the shape of tins, remains in many households all over the country and possibly overseas.
It is only when you see the large collection of Metal Box tins in a display at Mansfield Museum from October 1st 2011 to January 2012 that you realise just how much these tins have been part of our lives.
The tins below are treasured both for their pictures and contents. They have often been given as Christmas or birthday gifts. No doubt many still do adorn children’s bedrooms.
While tin money boxes such as these were an encouragement for children to save their pennies, additionally they are now a collecter’s item for post box enthusiasts
Amongst this selection there are tins for children, tins for people with coughs (Fishermans Friends), and did any of us ever consider where those black petty cash tins came from?
Pictures of children, birds, animals all make these tins attractive and have encouraged people to buy them.
Royal events appear on tins and make them collectable. Back in June 1914 King George V and Queen Mary visited Metal Box, what an exciting time that would have been for everyone.
Every Christmas tins of sweets appear in the shops and supermarkets and though these round ones are difficult to wrap, very few people will refuse the contents!
Now who can remember Cadbury’s Chocolate bars being 2d?
Here we have a real mix of tins, a waste bin on the top shelf, Typhoo Tea below – what did all the other’s contain?
‘Pin Ups’ on tins made them a little more daring.
Beautiful biscuit tins and ‘Anti gas Ointment’ – this makes you think!
Metal Box made tins for many firms, these tins reveal just a few, Crawfords, Weetabix and Cadburys. Can you name more?
What did this selection of tins contain? what did people use them for afterwards?
An array of kitchen tins used for tea, coffee, biscuits and cakes of every variety.
A varied selection of old and new.
We have a real contrast here – Black Magic chocolates and Fishermans Friends cough sweets!
Tall & thin, short & fat, square and round – how were all these tins designed and made?
Look at the wonderful tin carriage, and house money boxes, they are quite a contrast to the tin bird box in the middle
Rat Killer amongst all those lovely tins – it makes you shudder.
A shelf full of whisky tins
How many tins have YOU recognised as having owned or still own? What have you kept in them – cakes, buttons, sewing threads, photos, screw drivers and handy tools? Do add a comment and tell us.