To add to their range of London Souvenirs, H. Seener Ltd commisioned a model of a police helmet based on that used by the Metropolitan Police during the 1960's. It first appeared in 1973 and was manufactured by Modern Products, the owners of Budgie Models, under an exclusive contract, and later by Starcourt Ltd who took over ownership of Modern Products in 1983.
Although the helmets appear plain toys, in fact they were bells with a centrally hung clanger which, with the resonance of the diecast helmet making them quite tuneful, gave them good play value. They measured approximately 68mm high, 58mm in breadth and 75mm front to back.
The helmets were cast as a single unit with the badge of the London Metropolitan Police on the outside at the front and a representation of the chin-strap around the base. On the top, the helmet 'spike' provided a handle enabling the helmet to be held when the bell was rung. Inside each helmet at the top was a hook from which the separate clanger was hung, and around the hook was cast 'H.SEENER LTD Made in England'.
It is not known how many variations of the Policeman's Helmet were produced but at least two different models are known, a plain one with a brass finish without decoration, and a more representative glossy black model with silver trim on the badge.
The helmets did not have individual boxes but were sold to vendors in boxes of 12 (1 dozen). These were plain brown card boxes with a label on one side identifying the contents and the finish of the items inside. The box illustrated below was for 'One dozen Brass' helmets.
With comparatively little identification and no reference to Budgie Models on the helmets (only on the boxes), the Police Helmets are hard to find, but they were manufactured to a high standard and made good bells.
In 1983 Starcourt Ltd began selling toys in violation of the exclusive contract with H.Seener Ltd which resulted in a dispute and the withdrawl by Mr Seener in 1984 of several models including the Police Helmet.
Variation 1: Brass finish without trim
1) Brass finish without trim
2) Black finish, silver trim on badge
Variation 2: Black with silver trim on badge
Inner views showing clapper and id. around hook
Original Starcourt Ltd trade box holding one dozen (12) helmets