Images courtesy of Portable Antiquities Scheme. For coin description and discussion see the BNS Research Blog article,  Ceolbald  of Northumbria: A New Look at an Old Moneyer, by Arthur Gran.

In line with the Warburg Institute's COVID policies and procedures the library will be open on Tuesdays between 11:00 and 15:30 only.
Beside the duty librarian, only one visitor can attend the RNS/BNS library on each Tuesday.
Visitors must request an appointment to visit the RNS/BNS Library at least 1 week in advance by emailing the librarian at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Please wait until your request has been confirmed by the RNS/BNS Librarian before making any travel arrangements or coming to the Warburg.
The Warburg will not admit anyone without an appointment into the building
It is momentous that the RNS/BNS Library is able to reopen, allowing members to again access this important resource. Hopefully we will be able to return to our normal access and hours before long; once COVID procedures allow.



Joint BNS/RNS Summer Conference, July 10th 2021.

Currency Systems: Reforms, Renewals and Failures


Fifty years after the United Kingdom implemented the move to decimalisation, the BNS and RNS are holding an all-day joint meeting which will focus on the reform and renewal of currency systems at different times and in different places.  The conference, titled Currency Systems: Reforms, Renewals and Failures will take place on Saturday 10 July 2021, starting at 9.30 am and closing around 4.45 pm, in the Headley Lecture Theatre at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford.

The day will comprise a series of papers by leading scholars that will explore why changes were undertaken, what worked and what did not. It will look at the experience of currency reforms and renewal in the Ancient world, Europe and Britain c.500 - c.1650 and in the modern world after 1770. In so doing the Conference will seek to identify some common factors behind the success or failure of coinage system reform and renewal.

As a consequence of the restrictions arising from the pandemic the event will offer the option to attend in person or online (via Zoom). In person attendance will provide a welcome chance to meet up again face to face after the lockdown but places will be limited depending on the prevailing restrictions at any one time. It is expected that an easing of restrictions by July will allow more places to be available for in person attendance. Any availability of additional in-person places will be advised when available. On-line participation opens this event up to anyone interested in this subject wherever they may be.


Attend in person at the Ashmolean, Oxford (£30/ticket), or attend online via Zoom (£10/ticket).   Bona-fide students may attend online free of charge.

Initially 20 tickets for in-person attendance will be available, but if Covid restrictions ease up as expected then further tickets will be released. These will first be offered to persons who have booked to attend via Zoom (£20/upgrade ticket).     Total Zoom attendees are limited to 100 persons.


Welcome to the January 2021 issue of BNS E-NEWS, which circulates in the week prior to each Society meeting to all members who have provided the Society with an email address.

For the present, because of government restrictions enforced due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Society is meeting online via Zoom.

Minutes of the November meeting

2021 subscriptions are now due – and do tell us if you change your address!

With the coming of the New Year it's time to remind members that prompt payment of your subscription not only means you keep receiving E-NEWS, and your annual copy of the British Numismatic Journal each autumn, but you will also save our Treasurer, David Young, a lot of time and effort spent chasing up outstanding payments. 

Fortunately, the Society is financially sound and thriving, with a 2020 year-end membership of 625. Membership fees have remained unchanged since 2003, a situation which thankfully is not likely to change in the short term. About half of you pay by direct debit or standing order, which is a Treasurer's delight: others should pay online at and by navigating to Membership, then Renewals. The Society has also recently incorporated a PayPal facility for membership payments, for those with PayPal accounts. Any member not certain of his or her current membership status should contact the Secretary.

Those overseas members who traditionally pay their subscriptions in US dollars, cash, at either of the important opening-year coin shows in Florida and New York, will have existing memberships extended to January 2022, when two years'-worth of dues will be payable.

Whichever way you pay, we appreciate your support – and because we want to ensure that you receive your copy of BNJ safely, please don't forget to inform us if you change address.

Money and Medals training moves online

Dates for your diary

Our next meeting


The Society's Blog goes from strength to strength

Not sure who was nicknamed 'Tumbledown Dick', or what a 'Crown in Quarters' groat is? Then check out the last few months' contributions to the BNS Research Blog, which is fast becoming a must-visit source for British and British Colonial numismatics. Among the latest posts are important notes on modern forgeries of Anglo-Saxon, Norman and early Plantagenet coins which have appeared on the market in recent times, and a warning that not everything in a slab is what it is stated to be by a third-party encapsulation service. Elsewhere, Tony Abramson contributes a note on his namesake, the medallist Abraham Abramson, while Gary Oddie, David Holt and Colin Pitchfork combine to bring together a die study of the testoons of Henry VII.

If you think you may have something new to share, then do consider submitting an article. Enquiries may be sent to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
Keep in contact with this Society initiative: and sign up for email notifications of new posts.






       BNS E-News : March 2021 - Click here to read

Welcome to the November 2020 issue of BNS E-NEWS, which circulates in the week prior to each Society meeting to all members who have provided the Society with an email address.

For the present, because of government restrictions enforced due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the Society is meeting online via Zoom.

Please click on any of the article headings below:

Minutes of the October meeting

Our next meeting

Our lecture on 24 November

Library latest

BNJ 90 being distributed this week: BNJ 87 now online

Don't forget to check out the latest Blog contributions

Money & Medals Newsletter 80: numismatics in lockdown

Dates for your diary

Please click on items of interest:

Minutes of the January meeting

Our next meeting - Feb 23rd

Summer Meeting taking shape

Money and Medals online training programme open to members

Dates for your diary

 Siege Coins



The Warburg Institute, where the RNS/BNS Numismatic Library is located, has reopened and the RNS/BNS Numismatic Library is set to reopen on Tuesday 24 November. As you would expect, there are several new COVID-19 procedures and policies that the Warburg require all library visitors to follow.


The following is a summary of the Warburg guidance for visitors:

a. All visitors to the RNS/BNS Numismatic Library must have a pre-approved appointment to visit the library.
b. When arriving at the Warburg, you must check in at the reception desk. Anyone who is not on the Warburg’s “Pre-Approved Visitor List” will be denied access to the building – without exception.
c. Visitors may be asked to register for “track and trace” before they can enter the Warburg.
d. Masks must be worn at all times within the Warburg, including the RNS/BNS Library.
e. The RNS/BNS Library will be cleaned on Tuesday mornings and on Wednesday to ensure the library is kept clean.
f. Please ensure that 2m social distancing is observed at all times in common areas and within the RNS/BNS Library (e.g. if the reader needs to browse the stacks behind the librarian's desk, the duty librarian will need to move away to ensure 2m separation at all times.)
g. Please only use the recycling and rubbish bins found in the main corridors of the Warburg and do not leave any rubbish in the RNS/BNS Library.
h. Only one duty librarian and one visitor can access the RNS/BNS Library on any one day. Ad-hoc visits to the library are not allowed by the Warburg at this time.

Please note – the RNS/BNS Library is only open on Tuesdays between noon and 17:00.



1) Members must request an appointment by emailing the RNS/BNS librarian at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., stating:
        a. Full name
        b. Date of visit requested (please only request a Tuesday between noon and 17:00).

2) All requests for an appointment must be received by the RNS/BNS Librarian at least 1 week before visiting to allow time for the librarian to co-ordinate access with the Warburg.

3) As only one visitor can access the RNS/BNS Library on any one day, appointment requests will be handled on a first come, first served basis.

4) Please do not make any arrangements, until your appointment has been confirmed by the RNS/BNS Librarian, confirming that the appointment has been accepted by the Warburg.

This is a first step towards reopening the RNS/BNS Library, while following the Warburg’s COVID-19 policies and procedures. The RNS/BNS Numismatic Library is an exceptional resource to be enjoyed by all members of the two societies – even if it is just one visitor at a time, for now.