Phil Stringer (UK)

Exhibits : An eclectic mix, Beating the breeze, No matchbox required, Spring loaded, Trench art 

In my childhood in the 1960’s I used to pick up interesting matchboxes for my cousin’s collection. At around ten years of age my eldest brother gave me his labels, about a hundred glued into a scrapbook, at that time I imagined it must have been the biggest collection in the country.

Fire Queen label, 53 x 34 mm
Fire Queen label, 53 x 34 mm

 

My cousin and myself were now in competition, if when cycling together a box was spotted we would fly off our bikes and a wrestling bundle would ensue.

The victor would retrieve his downturned prize to reveal a Fire Queen (the most common in our area).

 

Bryant & May Windproof matches, 53 x 36 x 16 mm
Bryant & May Windproof matches, 53 x 36 x 16 mm

Even as a child I was aware that family friends would reel in horror at the prospect of a showing of my “huge” collection. I’d entertain them with a B&M windproof match that wouldn’t blow out. Then I bought a full box of B&M Braided Cigar Lights; my interest for match oddities was born.

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