A Gazetteer of Lock and Key Makers

Jim Evans

this gazetteer is copyright Jim Evans, 2002

James Gibbons Ltd. architectural fittings 1952


Finger plates seem to come in less variety.  The four shown here are as elaborate as they get.
Of course if you wanted a different design then Gibbons would make it for you.  Indeed they would make the whole door, and its fanlight,  if you wanted.  This is what they have done here for the offices of Lotus Ltd,. in Stone.  The architect was Raymond E. Hawkins of Cannock.

The catalogue next embarks on door ring handles and door knockers, letter plates and postal handles.  And the lion with a quoit in its mouth reappears in the the cabinet fittings which follow, doing duty as a drawer pull. 
The catalogue now reverts to the more prosaic, with a large number of hat and coat hooks, two of which have definitely captured the design spirit of the moment as they have coloured plastic balls at the end of the hook. 

There are then no less than 12 different designs of espagnolette bolts, which, if you were wondering, are the kind of long tall bolts you find on things like french windows.  One of the plainer variety is shown on the right.

There are then several designs of Gibbons' Improved Patent Automatic Panic Fittings, which are those arrangements of bars and bolts usually fitted to the inside of doors in cinemas and like places, whereby those leaving the place in a panic just push up on the cross bar and the door flies open.

And so we continue with door bolts, butts and hinges, floor springs, door closers, door holders and stops, and casement turns, just two of the many being shown here.

And then onwards to casement turns, casement stays frictions stays, water bars (to stop draughts and water coming under the door) sash fasteners, sash fittings of all sorts ...

fanlight sidearms, fanlight catches, and then on to a variety of fanlight openers, one of which is shown here, and then hand rail brackets, towel rails, curtain rods and shelf brackets. 

It's time for another prestige commission and here is a staircase at the Midland Hotel, Morecambe, by Oliver Hill, where Gibbons provided the balustrades.  At the time of writing (2003) this building is the subject of much dispute between the conservationists and the developers. 
Gibbons also seem, at this time, to have been into gates in quite a big way, at least for one off commissions.  They made these gates for the Rankin Porch of Liverpool Cathedral - Sir Giles Gilbert Scott, again. 

From the church militant to the state militant, Gibbons made these gates for the Royal Air Force at Cranwell, architect J. G. West.
Name plates and memorial plaques were also available, as were individual letters in many sizes, several styles and several materials, inlcuding bronze and stainless steel .

In a reversion to old materials and old styles there was a range of wrought iron items available ...

... a selection of which could be assembled into this sort of pastiche:


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