British & Commonwealth Military Badge Forum

British & Commonwealth Military Badge Forum (
-   General Topics. (
-   -   J. R. Gaunt & Son Advertisements (

'Ticker' Riley 10-04-10 09:59 AM

J. R. Gaunt & Son Advertisements
As we’ve seen a few postings about J. R. Gaunt lately I thought Forum members might find the following advertisements of interest. I happened across them whilst flicking through a volume of the Army and Navy Gazette for 1918 recently:

The first one appears in a number of issues from April right through to October 1918, but the other only in December 1918 (probably also after that, but I didn’t have time to look at the volume for 1919). Although the two ads are essentially the same, the wording in the second is slightly different and the address has also changed. Another cracking advert is the following from Peck’s Circular Trades Directory and Detailed Byers’ Guide to the Manufactures of Birmingham and District ... for 1896-7:

As well has having a nice little depiction of the Firm’s works, the ad lists the array of different badges, buttons, fittings, clasps, etc. that the Company made at that time. Intriguingly it gives them as having been “Established 1860”, and also as being the “Successors to David Faris” – what the significance of this is I do not know, as I have yet to do much research into Gaunts and their history. If anyone else knows of any Gaunt advertisements then I’d be glad to hear about them, and if I find any more I’ll be sure to put them up here.



Keith Blakeman 10-04-10 11:22 AM

Very interesting. However established 1860 & 200 years conflicts a bit. :confused:

'Ticker' Riley 10-04-10 12:56 PM

Establishment of J. R. Gaunt
Hello Keith

Yes the date 1860 certainly seems at odds with Gaunt’s 1918 claim that they were by then some 200 years old! Perhaps the advert in Peck’s Circular is referring to the establishment of this “David Faris” in 1860? Interestingly in btns’ recent posting to another Gaunt thread he quotes “The new company J.R. Gaunt & Son was established in Birmingham in 1884” (Aucioneer DNW sales info), and seems to suggest that the 200 year history Gaunt claimed was actually that of another company - namely Edward Thurkle. Further, both the ‘Button and Badge Makers’ section of the Oldcopper website and ‘Backmarks on British Buttons and the Dates Used’ on Diana’s Buttons site talk about J. R. Gaunts at Birmingham as having operated from 1870-1973 (or at least that button marks would suggest these dates), whilst Firmin’s History webpage tell us “J R Gaunt & Son” were established in 1750. I think this last date is probably the more correct one for the establishment of Gaunt themselves, though the fact they took over other firms at various times does look to have clouded the issue quite a bit. At some point I do hope to look at Gaunt’s history in more detail, but from what has already been put up on the Forum elsewhere it would appear to be a rather daunting task to say the least!

Best regards


btns 10-04-10 09:49 PM

Hello Martin,
Thank you for your very valuable contribution.
The clasp manufacturing firm of David Faris, est 1860, must have been one of the first major acquisitions. Gaunt moved to the Faris' address. DNW states "by 1895".

btns 12-04-10 07:36 AM

The factory in the advertisement burned down in 1912. Everything was lost, including 20,000 dies.
I assume they subcontracted other workshops until the factory was rebuilt.

'Ticker' Riley 12-04-10 10:35 AM

J. R. Gaunt & David Faris
Hello btns

I’m glad you found my postings of interest, and it certainly seems that you’ve turned up some very useful information yourself. I’m especially grateful to you for confirming that the 1860 establishment date is for David Faris, and that Gaunts actually moved into his former premises. The fact you have also found out that this factory was then destroyed by fire in 1912, along with the loss of all the dies, is exceptionally interesting and significant. It’s good to see another Forum member taking such an interest in the history of this particular badge maker, and I very much look forward to reading more about your discoveries in due course.

Best regards


'Ticker' Riley 13-04-10 06:18 PM

Sale of David Faris' Factory
Whilst this may be taking things slightly off subject with this thread, though following on from mine and btns last postings a little - it would seem that David Faris got into financial difficulties, and was forced to put his works in Warstone Parade and Alfred Street up for auction. Here’s part of the relevant notice for the sale that took place on 11 April 1894 from The Birmingham Daily Post of March that year:

Presumably Gaunts bought the factory at the auction, though we would probably need to do further research to confirm this. Interestingly things would seem to have taken their toll on David Faris, as he looks to have died quite suddenly at the beginning of September 1894 in Dublin. Anyway, I also have something on the 1912 fire, but will post that up to the other thread.



peter616 14-04-10 09:46 PM

1 Attachment(s)
This is the only thing i have got need to go look in the other files

Attachment 24094

'Ticker' Riley 15-04-10 07:01 PM

Images of J. R. Gaunt's Factories
Hi Peter

What a wonderful piece of history you have there! Is this also from one of the Gaunt pattern books, or is it part of something else? Lovely depictions of both the Warstone Parade/Pemberton Street Factory and the Soho Sword Works – the one of the Birmingham site apparently shows the Works before the 1912 fire, and is similar to something btns sent me. There’s also quite a difference in how this appears here and how what is presumably the same factory was shown in the 1896-7 advert that was in Peck’s Circular, probably due to how it had been enlarged and developed by Gaunts since they took it over from David Faris in 1894. Excellent stuff – many thanks for sharing this with the rest of us.

Best regards


Keith Blakeman 15-04-10 07:28 PM

Interesting to see they had a manufactring works in Denmark St. WC2. This is quite a small street in Central London with guitar shops on each side of the road, which as far as I'm aware hasn't changed since the turn of the century. I'm sure the works would appear on an OS map.

btns 15-04-10 07:29 PM

Dear Peter,
Thank you for posting such a nice picture.
It dates from after the Thurke acquisition in 1899. The Soho factory was theirs.
As Martin has pointed out these Warstone Lane buildings have been destroyed in the 1912 fire.
They have retained David Faris' old telegraph address "Clasps, Birmingham". He was the previous owner of the Warstone Lane buildings and a book rim and clasp manufacturer.

peter616 15-04-10 08:59 PM

the page is from one of my Gaunt pattern books will look to see if any more info


grey_green_acorn 02-05-10 09:08 PM

J R Gaunt & Son - 1986 Advertising Material
4 Attachment(s)
Here are some more recent (circa 1986?) advertising flyers from J R Gaunt & Son Ltd. "A Subsidiary of the Birmingham Mint plc"

'Ticker' Riley 16-05-10 03:32 PM

1980s Gaunt Publicity Flyers
Hello grey green acorn

Many thanks for posting up these 1980s Gaunt publicity flyers - really interesting to see some of what the Firm were producing at that point, even if they were no longer independent. Itís a shame they arenít around as such anymore, though I suppose it was inevitable given the state of manufacturing and market pressures. Ironic too that after J. R. Gaunt and his son C. F. Gaunt left Firmin to found their Company all those years ago, it should ultimately end up as part of Firminís portfolio today! Anyway, thank you again for sharing things with the rest of us.

Best regards


'Ticker' Riley 25-06-10 12:07 PM

More J. R. Gaunt & Son Advertisements
Thought I’d just put up a couple more Gaunt advertisements that I’ve come across recently. The first is from The Army Annual and Year Book for 1913, and, although sadly not containing any illustrations like the previous ones I posted, I personally think it is interesting if only as another example of how the Firm sought to sell themselves and their wares:

This particular add mentions the factory on “Warstone Parade” as well as the “53 Conduit St” outlet, and also notes the fact that an “Illustrated Catalogue” may be obtained “on Application” I think I have seen mention of these catalogues elsewhere on the Forum, and would dearly love to know if they had pictures of any Leicesters badges in them. Anyway, the next ad actually appeared in the 1934 Dress Regulations for The Army, along with other advertisements for Firmin & Sons and Charles Pitt & Co.:

By then the Company had moved their London branch to “2 New Burlington Place”, but apart from that the content of the ad is much the same as before - emphasising the wide range of items they made, as well as their “200 Years” of history. Interestingly by this point they were using the Royal Coat of Arms and the phrase “By Appointment to H.M. The King”, rather than the previous ones of “Manufactures to His Majesty’s Government” or “Contractors to the British and Foreign Governments”. Hope a few other members find all of this as interesting as I do? I always think things like this add a little to the historic background of the hobby.



All times are GMT. The time now is 04:38 PM.

Powered by: vBulletin
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.