British Metal, (Kingston) Ltd
is a trade name that can be found under many items of good quality, useful, decorative
brassware. Typically there is a decorative pattern that has been
relief-etched and filled with colours. The patterns may have a Japanese,
Chinese, Persian or Indian type of theme tailored to suit the British taste, like so much
inspired by the work of Christopher Dresser after his return from Japan.
'All the 'Kinco'
designs are actual reproductions, faithful in the tiniest detail to the world
famous originals of known masters. They are made in heavy brass.' -
(The 'Kinco' News, September 1926.)
are not highly valued at present and may be found at many fairs and dealers.
At a distance it is possible to recognise the maker's products but close
examination shows the multitude of designs that were used. Items
were made in good quantities from sheet brass that was much harder than usual so
their survival rate is good. Most items in the catalogues were made with a
selection of different decorative etched patterns, see the bottom of this page
and the accompanying pages of views of products.
Kinco Catalogue for 1932
Some of the
items are marked 'Made in
England'. The Trade Mark 'Kinco' was registered to
British Metal, (Kingston) Ltd,
47, Eden Street, Kincoland, Kingston-on-Thames, Surrey which was there from
c1923 to c1930.
In 1930, British
Metal Engraving Co. was set up nearby at St Margaret's Works in Twickenham, Middlesex
and lasted there until c1963.
In catalogues they mentioned being established in 1887 but what was produced
before the post WW1 'Kinco' wares is not known.
They had continued production of Kinco wares until the outbreak of war in 1939
when they switched to making labels, nameplates and other printed or engraved
items for aircraft, etc. The firm moved to new premises in Witney,
Oxfordshire and was bought out in 1984. (Thanks to Bob Polfeman).
Kinco also made miniature metal looms.
Further information would be very welcome.
"The name 'Kinco' is abbreviated from Kingston-on-Thames, near
London which was originally a King's town. Seven, if not more, Saxon
rulers were crowned upon the famous old stone which stands in the centre of the
town." (From The 'Kinco' News, September 1926.)
(The name 'Kinco' as a
Trade Mark was also
registered by Harris Lifting Co., Cradley Heath, West Midlands in 1954 and is
use for clothing and other items.)
designs with an Asiatic theme the mark is:
Where the design theme is European, the mark is:
This paper label is under a
trump indicating holder for a pack of cards.
The 'Dust only' suggestion applied to most
Kinco products since they were well lacquered over the infill of paint in the
Polishing tends to destroy the protective
lacquer and removes the paint colour.
Here is a rare version of the mark found under
a brass jardinière.
A small selection of 'Kinco' products.