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BANS Annual Congress 2009

Held at The Royal Hotel,
St. Nicholas Street, Scarborough

3rd to 5th April, 2009

Host Society : Yorkshire Numismatic Society

The Royal Hotel, close to Scarborough's seafront, was the venue for the 2009 National Numismatic Congress of BANS staged over the weekend of 3-5 April.

A total of 72 delegates from all over the British Isles, representing 25 national and local numismatic societies, enjoyed a warm welcome from the organising team, led by David Goodall, Stephen Skellern, Ian Dowthwaite and other officers and members of the hosting Yorkshire Numismatic Society in this, their centenary year. Indeed, the fact that there were no less than 17 members of the organising society in attendance ensured a convivial and extremely well-run event, for which those responsible should take full credit.

Fortified by an ample dinner, proceedings got off to an invigorating start on the Friday evening with Simon Tomson, excavations director of the Pontefract & District Archaeological Society, talking about coins in a field archaeological context in relation to some recent county excavations. Saturday's lecturers maintained the north-country element of the programme - Dr Goodall, the Society's 63rd president, spoke about the chemical dimensions of numismatics; Dr Peter Watson, editor of the Society's Proceedings, looked at the behavourial traits of self identity pertaining to some of the early Roman emperors as seen on their coins; Keith Sugden presented a masterly exposé of the Ostrogothic coinage, directly relating it to the contemporary Byzantine issues of the time; and Tony Abramson encompassed the latest research in describing finds of sceattas in and of Northumbria.

Sunday was the turn of the visitors. Joe Bispham placed the various issues of silver pennies of King Stephen into context with the broader historical events surrounding the reign; Chris Comber took a detailed look at the various aspects and nuances of the hammered shillings of Elizabeth I; Peter Clayton presented a lively explanation of three naval battles that changed the course of history - Actium, Lepanto and The Nile, or Alexandria - and showed images of related coins and medals; and last but by no means least, BANS vice-president, Kevin Clancy, provided a thought-provoking address, ‘The currency of portrait.'

On Saturday afternoon most delegates took up the option to visit the ruins of Whitby Abbey, where Simon Tomson acted as our guide and gave an impromptu and fascinating account of this English Heritage property. Dinner in the evening was followed by a piano recital by Dr Goodall and Mrs Elaine Skellern, and a large raffle with prizes donated from a variety of trade sources; indeed it was pleasing to note that among the roster of sponsors this year was the Skipton Building Society. All delegates received a replica of a Charles I Scarborough siege coin, struck by David Greenhalgh, while the speakers were each rewarded with a bronze specimen of the Yorkshire Numismatic Society's centenary medal.

List of lectures given at the Congress.

Chris Comber    The Hammered Shillings of Elizabeth
Peter Clayton Clear for Action! The Numismatics of Three Naval Battles that
Changed History: Actium, Lepanto and The Nile
David Goodall The Chemical Dimensions of Numismatics
Tony Abramson Sceattas: Finds in and of Northumbria
Peter Watson The Influence of the Self-identity of early
Roman Emperors on their Coins
Keith Sugden The Coinage of the Ostrogoths
Joe Bispham The Coins of Stephen
Kevin Clancy tbc
Simon Tomson Coins and Context in Field Archaeology