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Winners announced in Lichfield historic coin competition

Charlotte Hamby, Samuel Johnson, Mollie Johnson and Carole Collier

Charlotte Hamby, Samuel Johnson, Mollie Johnson and Carole Collier

The winners have been announced in a historic coin competition run in Lichfield to help celebrate Dr Johnson’s 300th birthday.

Back in June, Lichfield District Council’s tourism team asked four to 14 year-olds to think up a shopping list of what Dr Johnson may have spent a half crown coin on.

The council received lots of entries, and after much head-scratching choose two competition winners.

Twelve year-old Charlotte Hambly of Tamworth was chosen as the winner of golden ticket to the Arts & Crafts Summer Fun at Sam’s House. Her suggestion of what Dr Johnson might have bought was: a posh writing set – including an ink pot, quill and writing parchment.

The second winner was Mollie Johnson who thought Dr Johnson would have spent his half crown on a magnifying glass. Eleven year-old Mollie from Burntwood has won a family ticket to see Pinocchio at the Lichfield Garrick this October.

The tourism team also thought Mollie’s younger brother’s entry of a big red dragon was brilliant. They thought he deserved a special mention because, on top of drawing a fantastic dragon, the four year-old is named after the great man himself – Samuel Johnson!

Councillor David S Smith, Leader of Lichfield District Council, said:

“We enjoyed going through all the entries. We chose our winners because their suggestions really captured the spirit of Dr Johnson, who would have no doubt found a new writing set and a magnifying glass extremely useful!”  

To see an online selection of the council’s historic coins and medals, visit A selection of some of the best coins is also on display at Lichfield Heritage Centre and the bookshop at the The Samuel Johnson Birthplace Museum.

Cllr Smith added:

“This is a really exciting year for Lichfield, and there will be lots of fun events to celebrate all through the year. To find out what’s going on, and to join in the festivities, please go to”

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