About Britains Farm Toys
- Since 1893 -
BRITAINS is a leading manufacturer in die-cast models and is a name synonymous with quality models since William Britain started making toy soldiers in 1893 using the hollow casting process. Born on 8th August 1831, William Britain worked as a brass tap maker. He soon, with his family, started making mechanical toys in their own home.
In 1893, their toy soldier manufacturing started with the hollow casting process for lead that William had developed and patented. This process gave them a light model with considerable strength along with large savings in the amount of lead used. Most importantly, it gave them the confidence in the quality and the ability to provide a steady production, giving the competitive edge they had been looking for.
In 1907, the company was incorporated to become Britains Ltd
They had to decide how big their toy figures should be and agreed that they would make all their soldiers to a standard height of 54mm (2.125 inches), a scale of 10mm to 1ft, or 1:32 scale. This is the scale that is still used to day for the Britains Farm and adopted by all other manufacturers of Farm Toys and Equipment.
During the 1914 - 1918 World War, sales of all military toys dropped to an all-time low. Food was short and Home Farming was important to feed the nation. Britains needed to do something to replace those sales. In 1921, the now world renowned Britains Model Home Farm was launched, in readiness for Christmas, consisting of 30 farm figures and animals which were introduced along with the first farm vehicle, the ‘4F’ Tumbrel Cart.
The first tractor introduced by Britains was the 127F/128F Fordson Major. It was launched in 1948, just three years after the real tractor. It came with a choice of either metal wheels or rubber tyres, again following the trend in the countryside where tractors were playing an increasingly larger part in the day to day management of nearly every farm, within 20 years tractors became the chief mainstay of Britains business. The Fordson Major stayed in production in that format until 1958.