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Welsh Brewery Playing Cards

Welsh Brewery Playing Cards

Playing cards in Wales - Welsh playing cards

N INTERESTING SELECTION of Welsh Breweries advertising playing cards has been kindly contributed by Mike Johnson of the British Brewery Playing Card Society. Currently at least 50 different brewery cards advertising Welsh ales, beers and breweries are known, mainly from Baines and Rhymney, and a few involving more obscure breweries. None are known to have been produced in Wales: cards were usually produced by English manufacturers (De La Rue, Universal Playing card Co. Ltd, Alf Cooke, Jarvis Porter).

Below: the Brain's "school master" card is very rare. I've been collecting over 20 years and have only ever seen 2 single copies in the possession of a German collector. I managed to acquire both when he sold up.

Brain's Beer advertising playing cards Brain's and Rhymney Beer advertising playing cards

Above & below: Barrel horse & jockey trade mark: who originally owned it, Rhymney or Croswell, as it appeared on both their cards prior to the merger?

Rhymney Beer advertising playing cards Rhymney Welsh Beer advertising playing cards

Below: "Ski Lager" card: Rhymney's last effort to stay in business by producing a keg lager. The only card I have ever seen without the "barrel horse & jockey" trade mark. Card issued in 1965, company taken over the following year by Whitbread, so the product obviously failed to appeal. I know several Welsh people and none can even remember it!

Rhymney Welsh Beer and Lager advertising playing cards Hancock's Brewery advertising playing cards Lloyd's and Pritchard's Breweries advertising playing cards Webb's Ales advertising playing cards Wrekin Ales advertising playing cards

Images and comments kindly provided by Mike Johnson of the British Brewery Playing Card Society.

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By Simon Wintle

Member since February 01, 1996

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Curator and editor of the World of Playing Cards since 1996. He is a former committee member of the IPCS and was graphics editor of The Playing-Card journal for many years. He has lived at various times in Chile, England and Wales and is currently living in Extremadura, Spain. Simon's first limited edition pack of playing cards was a replica of a seventeenth century traditional English pack, which he produced from woodblocks and stencils.


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