Sold for $24,154

Sold for $7270

Sold for $21,150

Sold for $4690

Sold for $4397


Friday 25th & Saturday 26th May 2018

Friday session commences at 1pm
Saturday session commences at 10am

West Plaza Hotel, Wakefield Street, Wellington, New Zealand


LIVE ONLINE BIDDING VIA AUCTION MOBILITY is available for this auction (a 3% charge applies for all successful bids placed through the live bidding facility).  Click to access the live bidding facility.

PLEASE NOTE: updates to the online descriptions have been made for lots 84, 396, 416, 424, 425, 431, 436, 459, 469, 502, 581, 645, 648, 681, 703, 742, 768, 771, 772, 867 & 893, which are not in the pdf/printed catalogue.  Lots 726 – 728 have been withdrawn.

Auction 20 - Friday, 25 May 2018

At the premises of Mowbray Collectables (Main Highway, Otaki) by appointment;
West Plaza Hotel, Wellington: Thursday 24th May 10am to 6pm, and Friday 25th & Saturday 26th May from 8am until approx 1 hour before the auction commences.

For any enquiries regarding lot descriptions etc, contact our office, +64 6 364 8270 or email

For those not attending the auction, bids can be placed by mail, phone, fax, e-mail or via our website.  Such bids should be received in our office no later than 8am NZ time (GMT + 12) Friday 16th March (at your risk if not received by auctioneer in time).  Mailed bids from overseas should be lodged at least two weeks prior, or phone us or place bids electronically.
Live online bidding is available via our website through Auction Mobility.  A 3% surcharge applies to all successful bids placed through Auction Mobility.
Telephone bidding may be made during the course of the auction; by prior arrangement only.

All Buyers Please Note: no GST will be added to the hammer price of lots.  However, a Buyers Premium of 17% (plus 15% GST on buyers premium for NZ buyers) will be added to the hammer price of each lot.

Exchange rates (approximateNZ Dollar equals UK 51p, USA 77c, Australia 95c, Euro 60c.   Click here for an online currency converter.

Credit card payments will incur a surcharge of 2% for Visa/Mastercard, and 3% for American Express/Diners.

Vendor bids are not accepted.

Mowbray Collectables’ next sale on 25 and 26 May 2018 will offer the largest sale of New Zealand banknotes in New Zealand yet – nearly 500 banknote lots, together with many New Zealand coins, tokens and medals, in 920 lots with estimates over $380,000, drawn from the Ian Birdling collection. Ian is a builder, entrepreneur and long-time collector specialising in New Zealand coins, tokens and banknotes, especially early New Zealand trading banknotes, error items and private issues. Foreign material includes Chinese, Scottish, English, US and other banknotes with a small number of World coins and medals.

The banknotes include many rare opportunities, starting from the 1840s with shin plasters, such as the unique 5 Shillings signed by James Smith, issued in 1845 in Wellington and the Edward Dorset One Pound, Taranaki, one of two known. They move on through 85 trading bank note lots from all six major banks that survived until the end of the trading bank issues in 1934 and other banks that did not last the distance, such as the Colonial Bank, with examples from One Pound to Fifty Pounds proofs and specimens, a Bank of Auckland ten pounds colour trial of 1865 – 67 and unissued Otago Banking Company 1850’s 10 shillings to Five Pounds. 1840’s Cheques from the New Zealand Banking Company, Kororarika and the Union Bank of Australia, signed by Wakefield in Wellington, add further early colonial items. 

Amongst banknotes are one of the finest Bank of New Zealand One Pound notes from the 1898 -1902 fifth issue, estimated at $NZ 12,000 in VF and the Union Bank of Australia 5 Pounds of 1905 in gF, estimated at $5000. The auction includes a National Bank of New Zealand 50 pounds proof of 1873, first issue in gEF, estimated at $3200. Issued notes are well represented, including several dates of BNZ notes not listed in the authoritative 2017 Andrew Clifford book on New Zealand trading bank notes. With trading bank notes generally selling above estimate in the Mowbray 16 March 2018 sale, there is plenty of interest in this selection. 

The nearly 300 Reserve Bank note lots include the key Lefeaux fifty pounds in an attractive overall “otherwise gF”, estimated at $15,000. Fifty Pound notes from the other major signatories are all available, including the scarce Fleming R 109691, with about ten known with prefixes prior to the more common late R 199 series. A strong range of NZ proof and specimen notes features.

122 New Zealand error notes are included, from spectacular butterfly and other printing folds to wet ink transfers and serial errors. Most are decimal but predecimals are included. 

A rare Scottish note is from The Banking Company in Aberdeen, 1799, Five Shillings, estimated at $NZ4500. While the grade rates as Good, very few of these are available. Other early English and Scottish provincial banknotes are included with 44 Scottish note lots as well as other World notes. 

New Zealand high grade coins include the Waitangi Crown in near UNC grade, estimated at $NZ7000, a proof pattern 1949 Crown and 1879 Joseph Moore pattern penny in AU, as well as scarcer Australasian nineteenth century trade tokens such as Wilson, Mears, the Lipman Levy Australian mule penny and World War II internment camp tokens. The auction features a wide range of New Zealand error coins, including 5-cent and 10-cent brockages as well as the rare 2011 no date ten cent Proof Set. World coins include early Chinese and Asian examples and a broad selection of Edward VIII fantasy crowns. 

Grateful thanks are again due to Ian, our buyers and staff for their support. The Mowbray team who produced this catalogue and sale include Nicola Bowden, Jared Thornton, Rodney Hall, Maree Malin, Keren Malin, Jan Macdonald, Paul Stark, Kirsten Fulford and John Mowbray. 

David Galt
Director, Coins, Medals and Banknotes

Coming Mowbray Numismatic Auctions

21st September 2018
March 2019
September 2019

Entries are invited for these auctions now. Please contact David Galt, Director Coins Medals and Banknotes 022 032 1143, 06 364 8270 or