Collection, not for sale. Info only.
With time to spare whilst locked in, I thought it might be an idea to put a few bits from
my collection up. I will try to put up either figures that are very unusual or themes where
you see the odd few sets, but not in bulk.
Collectors lead toy football teams. With the lack of football (soccer) at the moment, I thought it might be interesting to show you some from my collection. Britains stated making footballers around 1906. They started with 12 teams which increased to 28 by 1936. In the earlier sets the goalkeeper would be in the same colours as the rest of the team and earliest figures are dated on the base.
From 1936 Britains also produced all teams in the (then) first division, other successful teams and newly promoted teams until they stopped production in 1941. They also painted (from 1936) teams on request for clients including teams representing leagues from Australia and Holland amongst others.
A selection of Britains footballers. The Arsenal team (second row left) have only 10 figures. Was one sent off ?. Have since purchased a complete team. Dutch footballers are 2nd row on the right. The 2nd best team in West London, Chelsea are in the middle, 3rd row.
Late correction pointed out to me by Norman Joplin, the best team in the premier league at the moment, Newcastle United are on row 4, right hand side.
Collectors will recognise the Timpo Manchester City team on the bottom row. Timpo were another maker of lead football figures, a rival of Britains. The goalkeeper diving is a magnificent figure. Next to them on the left are a selection of referees and linesmen.
A 1934 original boxed set of Tottenham Hotspur FC. The Linesman is missing and additional corner flag included. All the football teams are rare figures but this Spurs team, made 86 years ago , is probably the easiest to find due to the clubs proximity to the Britains factory.
Missed opportunity ?
Britains did however miss out by not producing one of the finest football teams the world has ever seen, Queens Park Rangers. You probably realise this is the team I support, my local team only a couple of miles away from Portobello Road market, where I grew up.
The closest old set I could find in the QPR colours was this 5 a side football game made by the French company CBG Mignot in the 1920s. It was not cheap, but we collectors know that when you find that ‘must have’ set, you have to buy it. If you can date in accurately or have any more info on this set I would be grateful to hear from you. If I do not hear from anyone I will assume QPR were an extremely popular football team in France in the 1920s.
These collectors lead toy football teams figures were actually made in the 1930s in Japan by a company named Perfection toys. The lining in an original box would show the playing field, goal posts and the stands full of sides. Players could be moved to various positions in the box. I have been told that the red and blue kits represent Yale against Harvard.