Maker and Role
Chamberlain and Hookham Limited, Manufacturer
A black rectangular cast iron meter with two glass windows and a dial to turn coins. A label on the machine states that “Bent or damaged coins must not be used”. Type RD, 200/250 Volt, 10 ampere, 1200 revs per kWh meter. Before the introduction of Alternating Current (AC) power these coin slot meters were used in boarding houses, public halls, and in some domestic homes. They were often mounted on a wall just inside the front door. A pre-decimal shilling coin (10 cents) was inserted into the slot at the top right. The key below the slot was turned clockwise to activate the meter. This would allow a shillings worth of electricity to be used. One Shilling would buy 10 kilo watt hours (kWh). The meter automatically recorded each coin deposited and the power board would collect the accumulated coins each month. Payment was commonly referred to as ‘feeding the meter’.
Signature/Marks and Type
Alternating current watt-hour meter/ 10 amps, 200-250 volts. 50 ~/ 1,200 revs. Per kWh. Type B.P/ no. 1974788/ Chamberlain & Hookham Ltd./ Birmingham, England Label
Turn handle so that arrow head points/ upwards, drop coin in slot & turn handle/ to right until coin drops./ Bent or damaged coins/ must not be used Label
Chamberlain and Hookham Limited. Coin Slot Meter [Chamberlain and Hookham], 2011.146. The Museum of Transport and Technology (MOTAT).