Do you recognise World War One medals from Luton pawnbroker?

Do you recognise these medals from a pawnbrokers in Park Street, Luton?
Do you recognise these medals from a pawnbrokers in Park Street, Luton?

More than 200 First World War and sports medals have been found in the belongings of a late Luton pawnbroker.

Philip Harman died last year and his daughter and son-in-law are hoping to trace the owners of the medals.

It is thought they were collected by Mr Harman, who was 89 when he died, at Harman and Sons Jewellers of Luton in Park Street, which he ran until his retirement in the 1970s.

Bob Elkin said: “My father-in-law passed away last year leaving a drawer full of interesting pieces which I assume he bought at the shop over the years. These include two medals from the 1920s in the name of J Stokes engraved LWCC which I believe stands for Luton Wheelers Cycle Club.”

The pawnbrokers was established in 1884 and Mr Harman was the third generation in the business. The shop sold men’s clothing, tools, furniture and household goods and a specialist jewellery shop was added in 1920, fitted out with red mahogany and curved plate glass windows.

After serving in southern India in REME in the Second World War, Mr Harman returned to the shop in 1946, buying and selling watches, clocks, rings, costume jewellery and dressing table sets.

With the advent of stainless steel cutlery he said he remembered educating the local dustmen to look for silver items in collected household rubbish and how to look for hallmarks.

The shop closed in 1972 when the council compulsorily purchased the site for the Park Street viaduct. One building, now student accommodation, remains at the side of the bridge.

Mr Harman was a vice president of the Friends of Luton Museum and was actively involved in raising money for the restoration of the Aveling and Porter steamroller at Stockwood Museum.

If you recognised any of the medals or would like to find out more, email